According to Wayne Pacelle's blog,
- Last year Virginia was the "hub" of puppy mills (the "Virginia Is For Puppy Mills" campaign), and Pennsylvania is "the puppy mill capitol of the East"
Gee, with Wayne stating facts like that, it makes you wonder WHY legislation is needed in states like Nevada, Minnesota, Washington, Oregon, Tennessee, Illinois, Maine, West Virginia, Arkansas, Delaware, Texas, California, Florida....you get the idea. Are all of these states infested with "puppy mills" as well?? The real reason for these bills? To ensnare the "other guy"...the hobby breeder; those breeders who are not required to operate under USDA guidelines.
From the H$U$ website: "Under current law in most states, and under current regulations of the federal Animal Welfare Act, individuals running breeding operations that only sell puppies directly to the public are not required to be licensed and inspected by an oversight agency." (YEP, show folks, that's YOU!)
And further: "USDA exempts breeding facilities – regardless of the number of animals they have or financial thresholds they meet – where the puppies are bred and sold directly to private pet owners as "retail pet stores."........"Without oversight, the operations can easily fall below even the most basic standards of humane housing and husbandry."
A good breeding facility law: (According to H$U$)
- applies to all breeding operations with animals or animal sales numbering over a specified threshold. (can you say "limit laws")
- requires a licensing fee and pre-inspection. (Like $500 per intact animal fee...and "must be of good moral character", as we have seen in bills proposed this year)
- includes routine, unannounced inspections at least twice yearly. (Warrantless searches of private property, unconstitutional last time I checked)
- is enforced by an agency with adequate funding and properly trained and tested staff. (Oh yeah, we're just in the worst economic crisis since the Depression, but I'm sure Wayne and company would love to step in and take over this job, huh)
- rotates inspectors to cover different areas of the state. (Uh-huh, I can see that happening...who would want to uproot their families to move to a different area...)
- is equipped with strong penalties when facilities are in repeated non-compliance, including but not limited to cease and desist orders. (H$U$ translation: raids, intimidation of breeders into "signing over" all dogs so said dogs can be sold for profit to further stuff their warchests)
Do you get it yet? Have you connected the dots? The current nationwide push to "end puppy mills" is NOT about protecting animals...it is NOT about cracking down on substandard breeders...it is NOT about regulating commercial breeders that are already under USDA guidelines...
What it IS about is ending purebred dog breeding. Period. Using incrementalism (limiting the number of animals someone can own, which can easily be lowered next time, in a new law), the Animal Rights group, the Humane Society of the United States, is pushing it's REAL agenda: to eliminate the hobby breeder, who has now become "just another puppy mill" in the eyes of the public...There is no one left to throw under the bus. The bus is headed straight for OUR breeding programs.
Are you willing to throw away years of dedication to your breed and your breeding program? Are you still one of those breeders that thinks "this law won't apply to me"? Now it does. There can be no compromise, no backing down. The only way to defeat the bullies is to get in their faces and scream, "HELL NO!! You will NOT take away MY rights...you will NOT tell me how many dogs I can own...you WILL NOT tell me how or when or to which dogs I can breed to!!!"
The "Anti-dog breeder bus" is roaring down the street...in YOUR state, or will be headed there shortly. There will be no "other guy" to sacrifice like we have done in the past because we are now the "other guy".