June 2010

From our Nation's Capitol
AKC Government Relations and our federal advocacy team in Washington, D.C., continue to monitor Congress for issues of interest to dog owners. Visit our 2010 Legislative Tracking Page and click on “US Fed” on the map to get the latest updates on all federal bills currently being monitored by the AKC. Check out the latest edition of AKC’s congressional newsletter In Session for interviews with congressional dog owners, policy analyses, and other articles that help us demonstrate to Congress our commitment to the promotion of responsible dog ownership.

Here are a few of the bills we’re tracking in Congress.

News from the State Capitols
The U.S. Congress, 14 state legislatures, and the District of Columbia are currently in regular session; Pennsylvania and California are in special session. Throughout 2010, AKC Government Relations (GR) has tracked over 1,100 bills at all levels of government. For the latest information on the state and federal bills being tracked by the Government Relations (GR) Department, visit our 2010 Legislation Tracking page. This page, updated daily, provides the latest bill text, status, and Legislative Alerts posted by the AKC.

For more information on any of the measures mentioned, contact us at (919) 816-3720 or doglaw@akc.org.

Here are some of the highlights.

Local Battles
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 doglaw@akc.org. 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.

Introducing AKC’s New State Legislative Newsletter!
AKC's In SessionFor the past two years, the AKC has published In Session, a quarterly newsletter for members of Congress and their staff that highlights canine legislative issues and provides information on AKC programs and community activities. Now, at the request of many clubs and breeders, we are pleased to introduce the new state legislative version of In Session. This quarterly newsletter will be sent to every state legislator throughout the United States, and also be available on our website for you to download, read, and share in person with your lawmakers. In our inaugural issue, we discuss state resolutions recognizing the AKC Canine Good Citizen Program, the value of responsible dog breeders, and highlight a variety of other AKC programs.

To download this newsletter, visit the AKC Government Relations website, click on “Government Relations Newsletters” and select the link for In Session. This page includes the most recent issues of both the state and congressional versions of In Session, as well as archives.
Get Involved in the Community This Summer
Summer is a busy time for many local communities. Fourth of July festivities, community festivals, and local fairs are just a few of the broad variety of events that take place in communities across the country. It is also a great time to start planning a Responsible Dog Ownership (RDO) Day for September. The AKC is offering free resources to the first 500 organizations to register their Responsible Dog Ownership Day community event. All these events are terrific opportunities to promote responsible ownership and educate the public about dogs and canine legislation issues! Read more.
New from the GR Toolbox:
Policy Analyses & Canine Legislation Education

In our ongoing effort to help educate clubs, breeders, lawmakers, and the general public about canine legislation, the AKC Government Relations Department continues to add new resources to the Government Relations Toolbox. This month, be sure to access six new issue analyses and articles to help educate you, your clubs, lawmakers, and your community about canine legislation and how AKC works to encourage responsible dog ownership and to protect the rights of responsible dog owners. Read more.
The past six months have been very busy for the Government Relations Department.

Although many legislatures have adjourned, there are still many state and local legislative issues pending across the United States. I encourage you to review them to see how you can help, and also to get a feel for the broad range of issues facing responsible dog owners and breeders around the country.

I also strongly encourage you to check out our inaugural edition of our newest newsletter, In Session for state legislators. Until now, this quarterly newsletter was only for members of the U.S. Congress. Our new state version contains some national information, but also information of special interest to state legislators.

Starting this month, the state version of In Session is being sent to every state legislator in the country. Please take the time to read this newsletter and consider printing it and personally giving a copy to your legislator to help introduce them to the world of AKC and responsible dog ownership.

We are also monitoring new legislation introduced in Congress. Companion bills S.3424/ H.R.5434, known as the Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety (“PUPS”) Act, would require all breeders who sell more than 50 puppies in a one-year period to obtain a USDA license, maintain minimum federal standards for care and conditions, be inspected by the USDA, and ensure that dogs receive sufficient exercise to maintain normal muscle mass. The AKC is currently reviewing this legislation.

The policy-making activity at all levels demonstrates again the need for continued education and communication about canine legislation. In this issue, we encourage you to consider the many summer activities in your area and how you can use those opportunities to promote responsible dog ownership and breeding. Be creative, and be sure to let us (as well as your legislators!) know about the work you are doing in your community.

This month’s new features in the AKC Government Relations Toolbox include easy-to-read policy analyses on breed-specific legislation, responsible breeding, and the importance of dog shows. We encourage you to print these articles and distribute them to lawmakers and others in your community.

We’ve also added several articles to help educate you, your clubs, and other dog-lovers about canine legislation. These articles discuss what to do when a bad bill is introduced and how AKC can help you fight back.

Finally, even if your state legislature has adjourned, local governments are still meeting and may be introducing canine legislation. Don’t forget to pay attention to local media and legal/public notices, and if you see an issue of concern in your area, be sure to contact us. The AKC Government Relations team provides numerous services to help you take a stand in your community.

Thank you for all you do to help us protect and promote responsible dog ownership and breeding. We look forward to continuing to work with you.

All the best,
Sheila Goffe
Director of Government Relations
Contact Us
Phone: (919) 816-3720
Email: doglaw@akc.org
Government Relations
Legislative Alerts
2010 Legislation Tracking

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