August 2005

CALIFORNIA - Sen. Speier's SB861, to repeal California's prohibition on breed-specific local ordinances, was not taken up for a vote before the legislature's summer adjournment. The bill would allow cities and counties to enact breed-specific ordinances that require mandatory spay/neuter or impose breeding restrictions on certain breeds. The bill will be eligible for a vote when members return in mid-August. For more information, and to find out how you can help, please read our Legislative Alert here

- Sen. Kehoe's SB914, which makes it a misdemeanor to sell any dog under 8 weeks of age, passed the Assembly Appropriations Committee and will now proceed to the Assembly floor. The bill does exempt rescue groups and allows puppies less than 8 weeks old to be sold with written approval of a licensed veterinarian.

- The City of Oakland has initially approved an ordinance which limits residents to 3 dogs, institutes mandatory microchipping and changes definitions for foster and rescue groups. A final vote on the proposal is expected at the September 20th meeting.

COLORADO - The City of Aurora is considering a "pit bull" ban similar to the one in Denver. The subcommittee, made of up 3 council members, will review the proposal at an August 9th meeting. AKC has sent a letter of opposition and dangerous dog packets to the council members.

CONNECTICUT - Rep. Megna's H6543 failed to pass prior to the adjournment of the legislature. The bill would have prohibited insurers from considering a customer's breed of dog when setting policy rates or minimum premiums. It also would have prohibited insurers from using a dog's breed as the reason for canceling, not renewing, or not issuing a policy.

- S1191 failed to pass the Joint Committee on Judiciary prior to adjournment. The bill would have authorized the creation of trusts for the care of domestic animals.

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With Congress in recess for the month of August and many other state legislatures in adjournment, we bring you an abbreviated issue of Taking Command this month. Readers will note that the City of Denver's recent win over the right to keep it's breed ban in place, despite state law to the contrary, has set off a new wave of municipalities calling for breed-specific legislation. Concerned dog owners are strongly encouraged to monitor their own communities, and to contact the Canine Legislation department with news of any proposals.

One positive way to combat negative legislation in your town is to promote responsible dog ownership. What better way to do that than to hold a Responsible Dog Ownership Day event in your area? For more information on how you can join AKC and hundreds of dog clubs in this September celebration, visit:

Stephanie Lane
Stephanie Lane, Director
Sarah Sprouse, Program Administrator
Phone: 919-816-3720 | Fax: 919-816-4275 | Email:

© The American Kennel Club 2005
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