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This week, the voices of responsible dog owners were heard by Tennessee legislators.  Here are updates on three bills that affect dogs, plus information on how you can continue to support House Bill 1646, which would protect certain working dogs.

SUPPORT:  HB 1646 – ADDITIONAL PROTECTIONS FOR CERTAIN WORKING DOGS.  House Bill 1646, a bill supported by the American Kennel Club (AKC), continues to advance. Also known as “Joker’s Law,” this bill seeks to revise the offense of killing or severely injuring a police, fire, search and rescue, or service dog.

Tennessee residents who support this legislation are urged to contact their state Representatives and Senators and respectfully ask them to VOTE YES on Joker’s Law, House Bill 1646.  Click here and enter your address to view who represents you and their email addresses.  Click on their photos for additional contact information.

 FAILED:  REQUIREMENTS FOR STRUCTURES THAT HOUSE DOGS.  Senate Bill 1788 did not advance in the Senate Judiciary Committee.  The bill would have enacted engineering standards and additional vague requirements for providing shelter for dogs, and would have made some responsible dog owners’ effective and humane care practices illegal.  Read more about why AKC opposed SB 1788 as introduced.

To send a message of thanks to those Senate Judiciary Committee members who voted to not advance SB 1788, click here, and click on each committee member’s photo for contact information. Senators voting no were: Bell, Gardenhire, Roberts, Rose, Stevens, and White. Let them know that Tennessee dog owners appreciate their dedication to the wellbeing of dogs and their support for the rights of responsible owners.

NOT HEARD IN SUBCOMMITTEE:  HB 2034 – TETHERING.  House Bill 2034 deals with tethering dogs. Read AKC’s previous informational alert on this legislation. AKC remains neutral on HB 2034 and will continue to monitor this bill.

Please contact AKC Government Relations at or 919-816-3720 for additional information on these bills and other canine legislation issues.

View advocacy resources from AKC Government Relations:

Recent Legislative & Informational Alerts

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