South Dakota House Bill 1159 seeks to impose additional requirements on and to establish additional inspections for commercial pet breeding operations in the state. The bill defines a commercial breeder “any person engaged in the business of breeding dogs or cats who sells, exchanges, or leases dogs or cats in return for consideration or who offers to do so, whether or not the dogs or cats are bred, raised, trained, groomed, or boarded by the person.” It provides exceptions for people who maintain fewer than 3 intact dogs or cats, or those who exchange fewer than 30 animals to a final consumer.
HB 1159 will be heard by the House Agriculture and Natural Resources committee on Thursday, February 9, 2017. All concerned South Dakota breeders and owners are strongly encouraged to contact the members of the committee and respectfully express their concerns with this legislation.
WHAT HB 1159 WILL DO:
As introduced, HB 1159 will:
- Define “primary enclosure” as any structure or device used to restrict a dog or cat to a limited amount of space, such as a room, pen, run, cage, compartment, or hutch.
- Provide a process by which a commercial breeding operation may be inspected. It requires representatives/agents of the South Dakota Animal Industries Board, a law enforcement officer, or an agent/officer of a humane society or organization, after receive a verified complaint, to enter the commercial breeding operations facility with a warrant and inspect. A verified complaint consists of a report made to law enforcement containing factual allegations and the name and address of the person making the complaint.
- The AKC is concerned that this provision will allow private, non-governmental humane organizations to be given enforcement powers generally reserved for commissioned law enforcement officers.
- Require all primary enclosures in commercial breeding operations facilities have a solid floor, and prohibit them from being stacked.
- The AKC is concerned that these provisions run counter to care standards allowed by the federal government, permitted by the American Kennel Club, and recommended the American Veterinary Medical Association. These standards include allowing the humane use of multiple flooring types to improve sanitation and animal comfort, and for the stacking of enclosures when done in ways that utilize barriers to prevent the waste contamination and allow for proper ventilation.
HB 1159 also mandates that commercial breeding operations maintain extensive care protocols, including a written program of care to include an annual physical examination, a vaccination schedule, and plans for disease control and prevention (including pest and parasite control), nutrition, exercise, socialization, and euthanasia. It will prohibit the breeding of dogs and cats determined unfit for breeding by a veterinarian. Commercial breeding operations would also be required to maintain individual health records for each dog for a period of five years and made available for inspection by the State Board, any peace officer, or any agent/officer of a humane society upon request.
WHO IS CONSIDERED A COMMERCIAL BREEDING OPERATION IN SOUTH DAKOTA:
Current state law describes commercial breeding operations as “any person engaged in the business of breeding dogs or cats who sells, exchanges, or leases dogs or cats in return for consideration or who offers to do so, whether or not the dogs or cats are bred, raised, trained, groomed, or boarded by the person.”
The law currently exempts from the definition of commercial breeding operations:
- Any person who owns or harbors three or fewer unaltered dogs or cats for breeding purposes that are at least six months of age is not a commercial breeding operation.
- Any person who sells, exchanges, or leases thirty or fewer dogs or cats in a twelve-month period is not a commercial breeding operation if all such dogs or cats are sold, exchanged, or leased to a final owner rather than for later retail sale or brokered trading.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
All concerned South Dakota breeders and owners are strongly encouraged to contact the members of the House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee and respectfully express their concerns with House Bill 1159.
Representative Herman Otten, Chair – Herman.Otten@sdlegislature.gov
Representative, Thomas Brunner, Vice Chair – Thomas.Brunner@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Julie Bartling – Julie.Bartling@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Roger Chase – Roger.Chase@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Bob Glanzer – Bob.Glanzer@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Spencer Gosch – Spencer.Gosch@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Kevin Jensen – Kevin.Jensen@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Oren Lesmeister – Oren.Lesmeister@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Steve Livermont – Steve.Livermont@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Sam Marty – Sam.Marty@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Tom Pischke – Tom.Pischke@sdlegislature.gov
Representative Larry Rhoden – Larry.Rhoden@sdlegislature.gov
Representative James Schaefer – James.Schaefer@sdlegislature.gov
For more information, contact AKC’s Government Relations Department at (919) 816-3720, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.