The AKC Government Relations Department continues to work with responsible dog owners to help with canine legislation issues in their local communities. If you hear of an issue in your town or county, contact us at (919) 816-3720 or email@example.com. We will be happy to provide you with the resources, tools, and support you need to help fight for responsible dog ownership in your community.
Here are some examples of the local issues currently being addressed by AKC GR:
Austin, TX – The Austin Animal Advisory Commission is considering an ordinance to require pet traders (those who sell more than 15 dogs or cats in a year) pay a $50 fee for each intact animal they sell and file a variety of paperwork with the city. The AKC GR department has sent a letter expressing our concerns with this measure. A second proposed ordinance would ban retail sales of dogs and cats within the city limits.
Riverside, CA – The Riverside City Council has voted unanimously to approve an ordinance that requires the spaying/neutering of any dog or cat for even a minor violation of the animal control ordinance, forces pet owners to microchip all their animals, and requires anyone with five or more dogs to obtain a residential kennel license. The AKC GR staff sent a letter to the city council opposing the measure and notified local, responsible dog owners and breeders of the meeting and proposed law.
Waco, TX – The Waco City Council has approved a mandatory spay/neuter ordinance which requires any resident with an intact dog to obtain a $50 license. Sterilized dogs are not required to be licensed. The AKC GR department sent a letter opposing the ordinance and provided local fanciers with talking points and background on the ineffectiveness of mandatory spay/neuter programs. The measure is set to go into effect in before commencing enforcement.
Dangerous Dog/Breed-Specific Legislation
Butte-Silver Bow, MT – The Butte-Silver Bow Council of Commissioners is drafting an ordinance to restrict ownership of “pit bulls.” The AKC GR department has sent a letter to the council members asking them to adopt a dangerous dog ordinance that is not breed-specific and has provided them with sample ordinances from other communities.
Crawford County, AR – The Crawford County Quorum Court is drafting a dangerous dog ordinance. Initially the court had discussed restricting ownership of “pit bulls,” but has since decided to pursue a general dangerous dog ordinance. The AKC GR department has sent a letter thanking the court for not pursuing a breed-specific ordinance and has provided sample dangerous dog ordinances for their review.
Lynn, MA – The Lynn City Council has passed restrictions on all "pit bulls," defined as American pit bull terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, or any mixed-breed dog containing these breeds or whose characteristics are similar to these breeds. These dogs will be required to have a special license and be registered with the city for a $50 fee. Other requirements include spaying/neutering, signage, and a limit of only 2 of these dogs per household. The council included an exemption for dogs that have a training certificate from a nationally-accredited trainer.
Hollister, CA – The Hollister City Council has granted the city attorney permission to draft a proposal mandating the sterilization of all “pit bulls” and Chihuahuas in an attempt to decrease shelter population and dog bite incidents. No hearing date has been set, but residents are encouraged to contact the council members and express opposition to this breed-specific, mandatory sterilization proposal. Read AKC’s Legislative Alert.
Point Coupee, LA – The Point Coupee Police Jury may consider numerous changes to the Parish’s animal control ordinance for owners of “Pit Bulls”, Rottweilers, Chow Chows, German Shepherds, Doberman Pinschers, Boxers, and Akitas. These include ownership age restrictions, increased licensing fees, and muzzling requirements. Although no public hearings are scheduled, Parish residents are encouraged to contact the members of the police jury and ask them to oppose breed-specific legislation. Read AKC’s previous Legislative Alert on this issue.
San Bernardino County, CA – The San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors has given initial approval to an ordinance that will require the spaying/neutering of all "pit bulls." The ordinance defines "pit bulls" as Staffordshire Bull Terriers, American Pit Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers and any mixed breed dog containing these breeds. Exemptions are provided for dogs registered with the American Kennel Club, United Kennel Club and other registries, as well as for law enforcement dogs, service and assistance dogs, dogs used for breeding at licensed kennels, and dogs medically unable to be sterilized. Responsible dog owners and breeders are encouraged to contact their representative on the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors and express their opposition. The AKC GR department has notified local residents and sent a letter to the supervisors stating our opposition to breed-specific laws.
Topeka, KS – The Topeka City Council held a work session regarding a proposed repeal of their breed-specific ordinance, which currently restricts the ownership of American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, American pit bull terriers and any mixed-breed dog with the characteristics of these breeds. GR has sent a letter supporting the repeal and packets containing sample dangerous dog ordinances to the city attorney and city council members. Local fanciers and breeders have also been asked to contact the council in support the proposed repeal.
Mequon, WI – The city may soon consider repealing its current dog fancier permit, which would effectively limit dog ownership for residents. The item was removed from the council’s May agenda, but may be considered in June or July. The AKC and the Dog Federation of Wisconsin, AKC’s Wisconsin federation, have both sent letters of concern and continue to closely monitor this proposal.