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New York Senate Bill 4961 seeks to classify more New Yorkers as “pet dealers” and to strictly regulate their operations.  The bill will be considered by the Senate Agriculture Committee tomorrow, Tuesday, June 2.  The American Kennel Club encourages all concerned responsible dog breeders and owners in the Empire State to contact the Senate Agriculture Committee and express their respectful yet strong opposition to Senate Bill 4961. 

The American Kennel Club’s mission includes working to protect the rights of all dog owners and promoting responsible dog ownership. The AKC strongly supports the humane treatment of dogs, including providing an adequate and nutritious diet, clean living conditions, regular veterinary care, kind and responsible human companionship, and training in appropriate behavior. The AKC also supports reasonable and enforceable laws that protect the welfare and health of dogs without restricting the rights of the many owners or breeders who take their responsibilities seriously.

Among other provisions of concern, SB 4961 also would:

  • Redefine “pet dealer” to mean “any person who (A) sells, offers for sale or negotiates the sale or purchase of animals born or raised on another premises; or (B) keeps on his or her premises more than four intact female dogs six months of age or older for the purpose of breeding such dogs.”
  • Remove existing statutory language that exempts breeders who sell less than 25 animals per year from being classified as pet dealers.

These changes would unreasonably classify significantly more breeders in New York as “pet dealers.” The AKC believes that, as the result of the large increase in affected parties, this change would make the Agriculture and Markets and Consumer Protection Laws incredibly costly to enforce, particularly at a time when the state’s budget is running a projected deficit of $2.5 billion.



All concerned responsible dog breeders and owners in New York are strongly encouraged to contact the members of the New York Senate Agriculture Committee.  Respectfully let them know that you oppose SB 4961 and encourage them to do the same.

Senator Darrel Aubertine (Chairman)
Phone: (518) 455-2761
District office: (315) 782-3418
Fax: (518) 455-6946

Senator Neil Breslin
Phone: (518) 455-2225

Senator Velmanette Montgomery
Phone: (518) 455-3451
District office: (718) 643-6140
Fax: (518) 426-6854

Senator Michael Ranzenhofer
Phone: (518) 455-3161
District office: (716) 631-8695
Fax: (518) 426-6963

Senator James Seward
Phone: (518) 455-3131
District office: (607) 432-5524

Senator William Stachowski
Phone: (518) 455-2426
District office: (716) 826-3344
Fax: (518) 426-6851

Senator David Valesky
Phone: (518) 455-2838
District office: (315) 478-8745
Fax: (518) 426-6885

Senator George Winner
Phone: (518) 455-2091
District office: (607) 732-2765
Fax: (518) 426-6976

Senator Catharine Young
Phone: (518) 455-3563
District office: (716) 372-4901
Fax: (518) 426-6905

Senate Bill 5392, which seeks to limit ownership of dogs in New York, will also be considered by the Senate Agriculture Committee tomorrow, Tuesday June 2.  Click here to see AKC’s Alert on SB 5392.  


For more information, contact AKC’s Government Relations Department at (919) 816-3720, or e-mail

New York Senate Bill 4961 seeks to classify more New Yorkers as "pet dealers" and to…