Minnesota Purebred Dog Breeders Association
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Legislation -- Current and potential
LEGISLATIVE UPDATE -- 2014

The new Breeder Licensing Bill passed:

During the 2014 legislative session a law was passed requiring commercial dog and cat breeders to be licensed and inspected by the Minnesota Board of Animal Health. The purpose of this new program is to protect the health and well-being of dogs and cats that are kept and produced by commercial breeders. A commercial breeder is defined in the law as a person who possesses or has an ownership interest in animals and is engaged in the business of breeding animals for sale or for exchange in return for consideration, and who possesses ten or more adult intact animals and whose animals produce more than five total litters of puppies or kittens per year.

 

Visit http://mn.gov/bah/dogs-cats.html#commercial-dog-and-cat-breeders for details and to download an application.

Minnesota Board of Animal Health BAH    http://mn.gov/bah


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A couple of links related to animal welfare, breeder licensing etc., that are very useful:

The National Animal Interest Alliance site:
www.naiaonline.org 

The  AKC as well monitors and has position statements on legislation 
www.akc.org

AND -- unsure who represents you or how to contact them?  Go to the
MN legislative web site which has information on how to contact legislators and has a link to find your representative and senator at the top of the left hand side. 


ttps://www.revisor.mn.gov/revisor/pages/search_status/status_detail.php?b=House&f=HF0388&ssn=0&y=2011

If there are other bills introduced we are for or against, or neutral, we will post that information here. Please be aware that there are some with agendas unrelated to animal welfare, the proper care of our beloved pets, that are very involved in the process.  We may agree with them on a few points, and not on many others but we do need to work together to promote the welfare of our best friends.
MPDBA overall position on animal welfare:

We are concerned that all animals be treated well, be properly fed, trained and cared for.  We support humane legislation that encourages this.  However, there are many bills currently being introduced in state legislatures that would limit our rights as pet owners and breeders. 

Therefore we as well as many other groups try to keep track of what is going on in our legislature and in cities and states across the country.  The American Kennel Club, and the National Animal Interest Alliance are also active in this.

The following is first, the Puppy Lemon Law which we highly support (we helped get it passed) and notes on several other current legislative topics.  This is by no means a complete list.  Keep alert for updates.

 The Minnesota Puppy/Kitten Lemon law, although still not well known, was passed in 1992 and took effect December 1 of that year.  This legislation was enacted after much effort and lobbying by ours and other dog clubs and organizations.  The purpose was to provide for a minimum contract, that was to be used by all breeders.  Reputable breeders have always used contracts which protect both the buyer and the seller.

Some of the main provisions of the Lemon Law are:
  • All breeders required to collect sales tax, which is most, must follow the provisions
  • Contracts must be used with certain minimum warranties
  • All infectious disease is covered for 10 days from the time of purchase
  • Congenital/hereditary defects are covered for 1 year from the time of purchase
    • note that MPDBA breeders guarantee this for a minimum of 2 years
  • Buyers must contact the seller within two (2) days of a diagnosis of a problem
  • Replacement of the pet, or refund of money is at the option of the buyer and included in the original contract.
  • Registration papers must be provided within 90 days
    • note that AKC requires papers at the time of purchase, or full name of sire and dam be provided to the buyer
    • if this does not occur, the buyer may keep the pet and demand refund of half the purchase price, or return the pet for a full refund.
  • The contract must include:
    • names of sire and dam with their registration numbers
    • a description of the pet
    • a statement that there either are no known health defects, or indication of what may be present
    • "USDA" number -- this is only for those that sell through second parties, such as pet shops
    • attached written health exam from veterinarian

A sample State contract is available at:   [coming soon]
And, samples of the MPDBA contract may be seen at: [coming soon]

Non-MPDBA members may use similar contracts with the same information but must not imply that they are members.

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Other Current Minnesota Statutes
    Cruelty and standards of Care


   One of the things we hear as to why additional breeder licensing bills/laws are needed is that currently there is nothing to prevent puppy mills from operating.  Well, there is, it is the enforcement that is difficult, both finding them and funding the investigations.
    Minnesota has several anti-cruelty statutes in place, plus the Best Standards of Care.  In addition, USDA covers those facilities that sell through second parties, dealers and some others.

Chapter 343 = Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

Chapter 346 = Stray animal; Companion animal

Dog and Cat Management, Best Standards of Care 
    from Minnesota Dept. of Agriculture

Chapter 347 = Dogs and Cats

USDA Animal Welfare Regulations

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"Dog and Cat Breeder Bill" (historical background)

This legislation was proposed initially during the 2007-2008 legislative session.  At the end of the 2008 session it had not been passed out of committee in either the House or the Senate.

It was then reintroduced, in a slightly altered fashion for the current legislative session (2009) as SF 0007, in the MN Senate and HF 0253 in the house.  In the Senate the bill had a hearing Jan. 27 and was tabled; the House bill has not been assigned to committee as of that date.

Our position was in opposition to this particular bill.  We certainly are concerned about pet welfare, and the excess numbers of animals that exist, however, this bill does little to help with that situation.  It defines Hobby breeders as those with fewer than 6 breedable bitches; many reputable breeders, mushers, sportsmen, rare breed fanciers have more than and raise them in their home. 

Other bills were also introduced.  We then met with representatives of many organizations, including animal rights, commercial breeders, veterinary association, and other animal welfare groups to develop: 

A potential bill, which was introduced a couple years ago, has now passed. We can support this bill as it adds the AND 5 or more litters per year, which helps better define commercial breeders.  Hobby breeder language was removed.  See link above to the Board of Animal Health web site for information on the legislation now law.


Or the National Animal Interest Alliance site: www.naiaonline.org

And, the AKC as well monitors and has position statements on legislation  www.akc.org

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  Mandatory Spay/Neuter  

Briefly, many areas are beginning to pass ordinances requiring the mandatory spaying/neutering of all dogs and cats by 4 months or 6 months of age (sometimes rabbits and ferrets too).  This is not a solution to the pet oversupply problem, and is not something that we support.  We encourage owners of pets that are not to be used for breeding to have them altered, but feel that legislation requiring this is counter-productive

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 Breed-specific legislation

We are proud of our work in the early 1990s in getting state legislation passed that forbids the banning of any specific breed by a local government unit (town, city, county etc.)  It is the individual animal behavior that should be responded to or as many have said "ban the deed not the breed.' There currently (2009) is no known legislation on this topic.


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 Dangerous Dog Laws
The 2008 legislature did pass this bill which increased penalties for some acts by specific dogs, and increased fines.  We continue to watch to see what is coming next in this area.  Again, the behavior of the individual dog is the important thing, this of course is a reflection of the behavior of the dog's owner.





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