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This week, two Connecticut legislative committees have scheduled public hearings as follows:

March 3, 2021, at 10amHB 6504 Regarding Animal Welfare.  This bill is supported by the American Kennel Club (AKC) because it would:

  • require a veterinary examination of animals brought into the state by animal shelters and update violation amounts;
  • update state law regarding service animals to match federal law;
  • allow towns to sign mutual aid agreements for temporary animal control officers when personnel are out on leave; and
  • require regional pounds to comply with municipal pound construction, maintenance, and sanitation standards.


  1. Anyone wishing to speak at the Environment Committee’s public Zoom hearing, which is scheduled to start at 10am on Wednesday, March 3, 2021, regarding HB 6504 must complete this form with your contact information. To register to testify by phone, call the Phone Registrant Line at 860-240-0431 to leave your contact information.  Registration will close on Tuesday, March 2nd at 2:00 P.M.
  2. Interested residents are encouraged to email written testimony in MS Word or PDF format to the Committee members directly at

March 5, 2021, at 10am – HB 6542 regarding Municipal Restrictions on Pet Shops.  If enacted, this bill would allow each city and town to create and enforce its own obligations and restrictions on state-licensed pet shops, including mandates that shops source pets only from animal shelters and rescues.  AKC is opposed for the following reasons:

  • It would create a patchwork of rules across the state for entities that are uniformly licensed and inspected by the state;
  • It promotes the idea that the best – and only – place to get a dog is from a shelter/ rescue;
  • It would eliminate all consumer protections provided by licensed shops, as shelters and rescues cannot provide the same guarantees.
  • It ignores the health issues and dangers that can arise from importing dogs for rescue – AKC is the largest purebred rescue network in the United States, and we are proud that our national breed clubs take great care of the animals that come into their rescues. However, there are rescues and transports that do not care as diligently for their animals.  This is a significant concern that can impact public health and the health of animals.


  1. To register to speak at the Planning and Development Committee’s public Zoom meeting, which is scheduled to start at 10am on Friday, March 5, 2021, regarding HB 6542, complete this form with your contact information and the bill number. To register to testify by phone, call the Phone Registrant Line at 203-350-3769 to leave your contact information. Registration will close on Thursday, March 4th at 3:00 P.M.
  2. Concerns can be shared with the committee members by emailing written testimony in MS Word or PDF format to

AKC Government Relations (AKC GR) will provide additional information as developments warrant.  For more information, contact AKC GR at