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Tuesday, April 30, 2019

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) recently unveiled a new online licensing and registration tool that helps businesses and individuals identify their regulation needs under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA).

Regulations established under the AWA set standards for the humane care and treatment for certain animals that are exhibited to the public, sold for use as pets, used in research, or transported commercially.  Each year, USDA issues licenses to nearly 6,000 people, and is responsible for ensuring that these regulated facilities are complying with the AWA’s humane standards of care.

By answering a few anonymous questions, groups and individuals such as breeders, dealers, exhibitors, transporters, and research facilities, will be able to see what type of license they need to start a new business or check if they are in compliance.  The tool does not require users to log in or sign up to access it.  After recognizing what licenses are needed, the website will provide links to download those applications.

As a reminder, the USDA will accept comments through May 21, 2019, on a proposed rule to “promote compliance, reduce licensing fees, and strengthen existing safeguards that prevent individuals and businesses who have a history of noncompliance from obtaining a license or working with regulated animals” under the AWA.  Please refer to AKC’s previous alert for more information on this proposed rule and how you can submit your comments.

For more information, contact AKC’s Government Relations Department at