Here are some examples of local issues currently being addressed by AKC GR:
Irvine, CA – The Irvine City Council is expected to consider changes to their animal control ordinance on September 13th. The ordinance will require the spaying and neutering of dogs impounded for a third time, with the only exemption for those deemed medically unfit to be sterilized. The measure will prohibit rodeos, circuses, or other similar activities. "Dog and cat exhibitions" are exempted, but the term is undefined making it unclear how AKC events may be impacted. Finally, the ordinance prohibits sales of dogs and cats by pet stores, although existing stores are allowed to continue selling animals until a specified date (this is blank in the draft). The ordinance exempts those who sell animals bred and reared on the premises of the person or establishment. AKC GR staff is coordinating education and outreach efforts with local clubs, responsible owners and breeders.
Visalia, CA – The Visalia City Council has adopted new fees for breeders and is in the process of revising the definitions for breeders and kennels. GR staff has alerted local clubs and residents to encourage them to work with city officials in drafting these revisions.
Cecil County, MD – The Cecil County Board of Commissioners is expected to schedule a public hearing to discuss numerous proposed changes to its licensing laws. These provisions include requiring a license and inspection for anyone who keeps dogs for hunting, tracking, participation in dog shows, performance events or field or obedience trials. Other proposed changes include requiring anyone who is “engaged in the business of breeding” five or more dogs to obtain a kennel license, individual dog licenses and a business license, as well as schedule annual inspections with three separate county departments. Local fanciers, breeders, and exhibitors are being encouraged to contact the commission and express opposition to these proposals. Read more and view the County Commission contact information.
Medford, MA – The Medford City Council is considering a mandatory spay/neuter proposal. While a final draft is not yet available, AKC GR has sent a letter of concern regarding mandatory sterilization laws and suggesting more positive alternatives. AKC GR is working with its Massachusetts federation to address this proposal.
Dangerous Dog/Breed-Specific Legislation
Aurora, CO – The Aurora City Council has approved a measure that would remove seven of the ten breeds on its restricted dog list. American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers and American Pit Bull Terriers remain on the list. Provisions are included to provide some exemptions for service dogs of these breeds. The measure requires a second vote prior to becoming law. The AKC is working closely with its Colorado federation in support of the repeal of all the city’s BSL laws.
Saginaw, MI – The City of Saginaw is seeking to restrict the ownership of 5 dog breeds (“pit bulls,” Rottweilers, German Shepherds, Bullmastiffs and Presa Canarios), and impose a 3-dog limit on all dog owners, regardless of breed. The list of breeds will be reconsidered and updated each year. The Council gave preliminary approval on June 6, and is expected to have a final vote later this month. Read the AKC’s Legislative Alert on this proposal, which provides talking points, a sample letter, and information on how you can help.
Butte County, MT – The Butte County-Silver Bow Council of Commissioners voted to table a requested ordinance that would have required “pit bulls” over the age of six months to be muzzled in public and their owners to provide proof of $100,000 liability insurance. “Pit bull” was defined as an American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Dogo Argentina, Presa Canario, Cane Corso, American Bulldog or any dog displaying the majority of physical traits of any one or more the breeds. AKC GR sent a letter to commissioners opposing a breed-specific ordinance.
Vancouver, WA – The Vancouver City Council will hold a work session in August to discuss possible changes to their dangerous dog law. Some local residents are encouraging the council to pursue a breed-specific ordinance. AKC GR sent a letter to the council opposing breed-specific legislation and provided alternative ordinances that have proven successful in other communities. AKC will contact local clubs and responsible dog owners with information about an upcoming work session
Los Angeles, CA – The City of Los Angeles Animal Services Department is proposing to increase the city’s current animal limit from 3 dogs or cats to 5 dogs or cats. AKC GR staff alerted local club members and breeders in Los Angeles, asking them to contact their council members in support of this change. AKC GR provided talking points that laud the proposed changes, but also discuss the general ineffectiveness of limit laws. This item has not yet been placed on the council’s agenda, but as ordinances do move very quickly, residents are being asked to contact the mayor and council as soon as possible in support of this change.
Yavapai County, AZ – The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors was scheduled to consider a proposal that would limit dog ownership to four dogs per acre, with a maximum of 20 dogs on a private property. This would also include those who have foster homes for dogs. The AKC notified parent clubs, local clubs, and breeders about the proposal and sent a letter of concern to the county Board. Due to the overwhelming number of calls and e-mails received by the Board, the proposal has been removed from the agenda.