The American Veterinary Medical Association (AMVA) has developed a model bill and regulations that aims to protect animals that are bred and sold as pets. Dr. Gail Golab, director of the AMVA Animal Welfare Division said, “This is an opportunity for AMVA to display leadership on an emerging animal welfare issue. The model bill and regulations are a comprehensive alternative to some of the less well-considered bills we are seeing around the country.”
The Model Bill and Regulations to Assure Appropriate Care for Dogs Intended for Use as Pets can be viewed here: http://www.avma.org/advocacy/state/issues/Care_for_Dogs_Model_Act_and_Regulations.pdf
We’ve compiled some highlights of its contents for you below:
- Any person licensed or subject to inspection by the USDA is exempt.
- A breeder or retailer will not be issued a license if he or she has pled no contest or has been found to have violated any Federal, State or local laws or regulations pertaining to animal cruelty within 1 year of application, or more than 1 year if the licensing board or agency determines the circumstances render the applicant unfit to be licensed.
- Licenses may be revoked for serious, repeated, or multiple violations to any of the provisions in the Act or its regulations.
- Once a license is revoked, the breeder or retailer must wait 1 year before applying for a new license. The facility or operation must remain closed during this time.
- Licensees must maintain accurate and detailed records for each animal for at least 5 years
- Dog housing must have at least partial solid flooring. Nonsolid flooring must be designed so that the paw of the dog is unable to extend through or become caught in the flooring.
- Housing must include shelter that provides protection from harmful extremes of temperature, air movement, moisture, light and other climatic elements.
- Feces and food wastes must be removed at least once daily.
- Food and water receptacles shall be cleaned daily.
- Dogs must be provided with positive human contact at least one daily excluding feeding time
- Each dog should have the opportunity to achieve a running stride at least once daily to develop proper muscle tone and mass. This should happen outside of the primary enclosure if there is insufficient space there.
- Each dog’s health and welfare is to be assessed daily.