The Montgomery County (NY) Legislature has approved a very problematic new law that, among other provisions, would require annual licensing, additional fees, and inspections of anyone who breeds a dog.
Prior to the County Executive making a final determination, the county has agreed to host a public hearing TOMORROW, Wednesday, December 17.
Dog owners and hobbyists residing in Montgomery County are strongly encouraged to contact the County Executive and attend Wednesday’s meeting to express your opposition to this new law (Scroll down for contact and meeting information)
The new legislation approved by the Legislature would, among other concerns, enact the following provisions:
- Licensing and inspections of home-based breeders – Anyone who breeds even one dog, and sells, exchanges or offers to sell dogs raised in their homes must apply for an annual permit and pay a fee. If you sell more than 8 dogs, then you are considered a pet dealer and must pay a larger permit fee and make payments twice a year based on your sales records.
All who breed dogs must be subject to inspections at least once a year. The county may contract with local non-profit animal welfare organizations to conduct inspections, as long as they are properly trained. The training will be developed by the county.
- Requirement that anyone who sells a dog to provide information on the benefits of spay/neuter – In addition to consumer protection laws, all breeders/”pet sellers”/”pet dealers” must provide every purchaser information on “the value of spaying and neutering of dogs and cats.” It is unclear what will constitute acceptable information and it is presumed that this is required even if the dogs are being sold to customers who wish to breed and/or participate in AKC events.
- Development of new oversight committee with no representation from breeders – A new Animal Welfare Investigation and Cruelty Prevention Oversight Committee is established that will among other duties hear appeals on denied/suspended licenses and recommend changes to the county animal control laws. This 15-member board includes county officials, animal control officers, local law enforcement, the county SPCA, a large and small animal veterinarian, and a representative from the local Farm Bureau. The AKC believes that breeders directly impacted by this law should have a seat on this committee.
- Development of new animal cruelty registry – An animal cruelty registry will be established that will include anyone who has been convicted of any violation of the state’s animal cruelty/neglect laws. This would appear to include minor violations that are corrected by the person. The names are placed on the registry for 10 years and no one on the list may own, purchase or exercise control over any animal.
These are just highlights of this measure. To read the full law and view the press release for the hearing, visit the Montgomery County website.
How You Can Help:
Those who reside or participate in AKC events in Montgomery County are urged to contact the County Executive TODAY and attend Wednesday’s hearing to express opposition to this measure:
County Executive Contact Information:
County Meeting Details:
Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Montgomery County Legislative Chambers
Fonda, NY 12068