Some Oklahoma breeders speaking out against new anti-puppy mill rules

Oklahoma’s new Board of Commercial Pet Breeders held a public hearing Thursday to allow comment on the development of details under the state’s Commercial Pet Breeders Act, which will be the law of the land next year.

A group of a few breeders showed up – as reported by – to suggest they can’t meet the new regulations. But if we read the elements of the new law that cover housing, veterinary care, time for exercise and access to food and water, we see that once again it’s all reasonable and no more than we provide for our pets at home – AT MINIMUM.

Yet, these breeders say they can’t comply. What they don’t realize is this – they make themselves sound like puppy millers. As is the case in other states with new or proposed anti-puppy mill regulations, these folks are screaming they don’t want to house their dogs in cages large enough for them to turn around and sleep comfortably.

They don’t want to have to take their dogs to the vet every year. They don’t want to make sure their breeding dogs have consistent access to water. They don’t want to be required to keep the kennels clean. They don’t want to allow their dogs a little exercise each day.

All this is just too much trouble for them. Maybe other breeders are doing all this – which is a FACT – but the others have so many breeding dogs that they can’t possibly take proper care of them all.

When you read the text of the bill and then listen to the statements made by the breeders who attended this meeting on Thursday, we actually see with even greater clarity the need for these new regulations.

The ‘I can’t meet the very minimum standards of care’ statements coming from some breeders is actually an alarm bell for improved regulations nationwide.

I’m sure restaurant owners across the country don’t really enjoy having inspectors come in to make sure their eateries meet minimum health regulations, but the regulations and inspections help to keep us safe. These inspection are needed not to regulate the clean restaurants, but for those who would put the public health at risk.

It is a similar situation with breeders. The regulations we see either in place or being proposed are designed to ensure the bad players either get out of the breeding business or are forced to meet minimum standards of care. This most importantly protects the dogs and also protects consumers.

Good breeders, just like good restaurant owners, will comply – knowing that inspections and standards will help to keep the bad players out of the business.

The breeders who are opposing new regulations need to be asked two questions –

1) – Would you tell a buyer of one of your puppies to house the dog in a tiny cage 24/7 for many years and not allow it regular exercise, veterinary care and clean food and water?

2) – Why is it a bad thing to allow a dog adequate space in its kennel and regular vet care and regular exercise and access to water and regular feeding?

What we know is good breeders think of their dogs as more than breeding machines. The bad players don’t want to be bothered with caring for their breeding machines.


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