Legislative News – puppy mills, crush videos and animal welfare

The news wires continue to buzz with movement in the right direction for animals. We’re a long way from where we need to be, but hopefully, the current trend will expand and gain more momentum.

I’ll have more in the coming hours and days, but for this morning, let’s look at a few reports ….

PUPS ACT: Care2 offers its take on the Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety Act (S. 3424/H.R. 5434) – proposed federal legislation to regulate puppy mills. Again, this bill would close a loophole that has allowed breeders to sell – unregulated – through pet stores and on the Internet.

Inspections are part of the bill – thankfully – and the Care2 piece notes the importance of the requirements on kennel space and the requirements for regular exercise that “allows the dogs to reach a running stride without the use of treadmills or similar devices.” This is extremely important and I am VERY pleased that this is part of the bill.

I keep seeing this “there are not enough inspectors” excuse from opponents of bills such as this. So they would believe that laws against murder or robbing banks should be tossed out because we don’t have enough police officers to fully stop these crimes? More inspectors are needed, but this is in no way a logical position to take in opposition to laws designed to stop crimes from being committed.

The fact that the regulations will be in place would offer tools for law enforcement and inspectors to shut down puppy mills across the country, even if the number of inspectors is lacking. At least, the problem could be attacked on a case-by-case basis.

CRUSH VIDEOS: A bill in the US House of Representatives moved forward last week, as it stepped out House Judiciary Committee. HR 5566 would target the trafficking of videos depicting “acts as the intentional crushing, burning, drowning, suffocating, and impaling of puppies, kittens, and other animals” – as reported in an article on ConsumerAffairs.com.

The next step should be to make sure dog-fighting videos are banned.

NEW ZEALAND: The New Zealand government unanimously passed a new animal welfare law Friday, raising the penalties for animal cruelty. Maximum sentences jump from three to five years and fines took a leap as well.

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