Stop Puppy Mills in Pennsylvania

  • by: ASPCA
  • target: Pennsylvania House of Representatives

The poor treatment and abysmal conditions of dogs in Pennsylvania's puppy mills is already well documented, but a bill to amend the Pennsylvania Dog Law will soon be introduced in the state's House of Representatives.

Passage of this bill is vital if Pennsylvania is to improve conditions for dogs kept in commercial kennels and put an end to the state's reputation as the "puppy mill capital of the East." The bill would require:

  • Doubling the cage space.
  • Veterinarian visits at least once per year and with each pregnancy.
  • Access to outdoor exercise areas.
  • And many more provisions for the health and well-being of dogs.

Sign the petition and urge the Pennsylvania House of Representatives to reform the Dog Law. The dogs have suffered long enough!

We are writing to urge you to support and cosponsor Representative Casorio's bill to amend the Dog Law. There are over 2100 commercial breeding kennels in Pennsylvania. This crucial legislation would ensure much needed changes to the current Pennsylvania laws regulating commercial dog breeding kennels. Further, it would give the Department of Agriculture and the Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement the tools they need to effectively and consistently guarantee the humane treatment of dogs housed in Pennsylvania's commercial kennels.

Pennsylvania has developed a reputation as "the puppy mill capital of the East." The State's puppy mill industry garnered national attention recently, with some of its worst kennels being featured on the Oprah Winfrey Show. The high concentration of large-scale commercial dog breeding facilities, particularly in Lancaster County, has tarnished the State's reputation for decades. Additionally, it has caused countless hardships to both in-state and out-of-state dog owners who have purchased sick dogs bred in Pennsylvania's puppy mills. Representative Casorio's bill will help the State clean up its worst kennels and restore the State's image in the eyes of the entire nation.

The legislation would create separate standards of care to be followed by large commercial kennels that sell or transfer more than 60 dogs in a calendar year or sell dogs to dealers or pet shops. For the dogs housed in those large-scale commercial kennels, life would dramatically improve. The legislation would double the cage space required for dogs over 12 weeks old housed in these kennels, as well as require that each dog be seen by a licensed veterinarian at least once a year or at each pregnancy. It would also require that dogs have a solid floor on which to rest, rather than spend their entire lives in tiny cages with wire flooring, as is currently permissible under Pennsylvania law. Additionally, the bill requires that all dogs be given access to an outdoor exercise area and prohibits cages from being stacked on top of one another.

The proposed changes to the dog law would also authorize the Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement to take much needed action against unlicensed kennels operating in contravention of the law. Under current Pennsylvania law, the Bureau is unable to adequately regulate such kennels.

Please note that the bill would not regulate any hobby breeders who keep and/or transfer fewer than 26 dogs in a calendar year. Nor will it require people who show dogs or train them for sporting or hunting events to meet unreasonable standards. These types of activities are not included in the definition of "commercial kennel" as set forth in the bill.

Dog Law reform in Pennsylvania is long over-due. The dogs have suffered long enough! Therefore, I respectfully urge you to support and cosponsor Representative Casorio's bill to amend the Dog Law.
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