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Last week, the Massachusetts House of Representatives debated and amended HB 4860, which seeks to enact law enforcement reforms.   Amendments to ensure continued utilization of police K-9 practices were not adopted as they were in the Senate version of the legislation.  Details of the bill and amendments can be viewed in AKC GR’s prior alert.

Now, appointees to a conference committee from the Senate and House will negotiate the final version of legislation to send to the Governor’s desk.

Police K-9s are an invaluable alternative to “use of force” tools such as tasers, tear gas, or other chemical weapons that are used to apprehend a suspect; but unlike those other methods, police K-9s can be immediately recalled.  The police K-9 text in SB 2820 would appropriately place restrictions on the use of dogs during mass demonstrations and for crowd control.

WHAT YOU CAN DO:  Massachusetts residents are encouraged to immediately email the six appointees to the conference committee and express:

  • Support for police K-9 working dogs,
  • Support for SB 2820 police K-9 text, and
  • Continued utilization of police K-9s by trained law enforcement handlers without requiring inappropriate reporting or use restrictions.

Sen. William Brownsberger,
Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz,
Sen. Bruce Tarr,
Rep. Clair Cronin,
Rep. Carlos Gonzalez,
Rep. Tim Whelan,

AKC Government Relations (AKC GR) will continue to provide updates on this legislation.  For more information, contact AKC GR at