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At a recent press event, the Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture, Auditor General and the sponsors of Senate Bill 663 and House Bill 1504 called on the Legislature to take action on bills that will increase fees for dog licenses in an effort to help address funding concerns with the Pennsylvania Dog Law program.

These bills as currently written would increase the license fees and lower the age required for licensing, while eliminating the price differential between intact and spayed or neutered dogs.

These identical bills have been assigned to their respective Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committees, but no meetings have been scheduled.  The legislature is currently in recess, and will likely remain so until September.

What the Bills Do:

SB 663 and HB 1504 include the following changes:

  • Lowering the requirement to obtain a dog license for any dog from three months to eight weeks.
  • Eliminating the yearly fee differential between intact and sterilized animal licenses by increasing the fee for a yearly license for a spayed or neutered dog from $6.50 to $10.00 and from $8.50 to $10.00 for intact dogs (license fees are also adjusted to $7 for owners who are at least 65, or persons with disabilities).
  • Eliminating the lifetime license fee difference between intact and sterilized animal licenses by Increasing the fee of a lifetime license for a spayed or neutered dog from $31.50 to $49.00 and lowering the fee for an intact dog from $51.50 to $49.00 (license fees are also adjusted to $33 for owners who are at least 65, or persons with disabilities).

While the bills if passed will lower the age at which dog licenses must be obtained, they will eliminate the current practice of differentiating between spayed or neutered dogs and intact dogs.  AKC and the Pennsylvania Federation of Dog Clubs both support repealing the current differential licensing fees, which punish responsible dog owners simply because they choose to own an intact dog.

If you wish to comment:

Comments regarding the bills or requests to schedule a committee hearing can be directed to the Committee Chairs.  The committee contact information is as follows:

Senate Bill 663:
Senator Elder Vogel, Jr., Chairman, Senate Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee
Senate Box 203047
Harrisburg, PA 17120-3047
Room: 362 Main Capitol
evogel@pasen.gov
(717) 787-3076
FAX: (717) 772-2756

House Bill 1504:
Hon. Mark K. Keller, Chairman, House Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee
105 Ryan Office Building
PO Box 202086
Harrisburg, PA 17120-2086
mkeller@pahousegop.com
(717) 783-1593
Fax: (717) 782-2894

AKC Government Relations and the Pennsylvania Federation of Dog Clubs will continue to monitor the bill.  For more information, contact AKC GR at doglaw@akc.org.

If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact us at enewsletter@akc.org
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