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Friday, January 27, 2017

New Jersey Senate Bill 1640  (Senate Committee Substitute 1640) is scheduled to for a hearing by the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee this Monday, January 30. 

The American Kennel Club (AKC) has strong concerns about numerous provisions in the measure. As currently written, the bill mischaracterizes “cruel” and bans even temporary tethering in a variety of humane circumstances, including the use of a grooming table for grooming or exhibition or tethering by disabled owners of service dogs who rely on being able to tether their dogs at night.

AKC encourages New Jersey’s fanciers and enthusiasts to first call or email members of the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and urge them to not advance SCS 1640.  

Second, the AKC strongly encourages all concerned New Jersey residents to appear in opposition to SCS 1640 at Monday’s meeting.

The American Kennel Club abhors cruel and negligent treatment of animals.  We support strong enforcement of cruelty laws that punish cruelty wherever it may occur.  However, SCS 1640 does little to improve New Jersey’s cruelty laws and creates arbitrary requirements that could actually harm responsible dog ownership. 

In New Jersey, 116 dog clubs are affiliated with the American Kennel Club.  In 2015, the AKC sanctioned more than 480 dog shows and educational dog events in the state, at which more than 82,500 dogs and their owners participated.  These family-friendly events are not only educational, but they are also a source of revenue for the communities where they take place.  One average, dog show exhibitors spend $684 on a weekend event, and a medium-sized weekend show can bring $850,000 into a community.  In its current form, SB 1640 may ultimately harm AKC events and the positive economic impact they have on communities. 

First, all New Jersey fanciers and enthusiasts are encouraged to contact the members of the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and urge them to not advance SCS 1640 as currently written.

State Senator Paul A. Sarlo, Chair
(201) 804-8118

State Senator Brian P. Stack, Vice Chair
(201) 721-5263

State Senator Jennifer Beck
(732) 933-1591

State Senator Anthony R. Bucco
(973) 627-9700

State Senator Nilsa Cruz-Perez
(856) 541-1251

State Senator Sandra B. Cunningham
(201) 451-5100

State Senator Patrick J. Diegnan
(908) 757-1677

State Senator Linda R. Greenstein
(609) 395-9911

State Senator Kevin J. O’Toole
(973) 237-1360

State Senator Steven J. Oroho
(973) 300-0200

State Senator M. Teresa Ruiz
(973) 484-1000

State Senator Samuel D. Thompson
(732) 607-7580

State Senator Jeff Van Drew
(609) 465-0700

Concerned New Jersey residents are strongly encouraged to attend Monday’s meeting of the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and express opposition to SCS 1640.  The meeting is currently scheduled for 1PM in Committee Room 4, which is on the first floor of the State House Annex, 125 W. State St #2, Trenton, NJ 08608.  Because SCS 1640 is one of 17 bills scheduled to be considered on Monday, AKC encourages those planning to attend to arrive early. 

For more information about SCS 1640 or other pending legislation in New Jersey, contact AKC’s Government Relations at