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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

The Connecticut Joint Committee on Environment held a hearing on March 1 on HB 5386, which sought to implement a law prohibiting pet stores from sourcing dogs or cats from anywhere but animal shelters and rescues, similar to legislation passed in California in 2018.  The American Kennel Club (AKC) submitted testimony in opposition to the measure, emphasizing the importance of consumer pet choice and noting the lack of oversight for Connecticut animal shelters and rescues.  Dialogue with the committee suggested they were inclined to support passage of the bill.  However, recent information surfaced that since adoption of the California pet store ban, animal welfare organizations have been charged with paying for puppies from illegitimate and unlicensed sources and breeding their own litters to then sell to an unsuspecting public.  The committee was made aware of these developments.

On Monday, March 25, the committee met to review HB 5386.  Rather than giving the bill a favorable report, the committee chose to amend it by requiring the Connecticut Commissioner of Agriculture research the problems experienced by California regulating agencies and consequences of the ban on business owners and level of consumer satisfaction.  The substitute text can be found here.

The American Kennel Club is grateful to the members of the Joint Environment Committee for their thoughtful review of the proposal and the questions they’ve raised.  AKC also appreciates the members of the general public who expressed concerns with HB 5386.

WHAT YOU CAN DO: Connecticut residents are encouraged to contact the members of the committee to directly express appreciation.  Send your comments to

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