New Texas Dog Bill Takes Aim at Sporting Dog Owners
Posted on March 8, 2013
Just 20 months ago, the Texas legislature passed sweeping new laws regulating dog breeders in the state. Now, animal rights and anti-hunting forces are back for more.
Texas House Bill 1449, sponsored by Representative John Kruempel (R-Seguin), would classify many sporting dog and hobby breeders as dog “dealers.” Despite an exemption in the 2011 law, sporting dog owners who produce and sell as little as two litters of dogs (21) in a year once again could find themselves regulated.
Under the bill, dog dealers would be required to:
Allow warrantless and unannounced government inspections of areas where dogs are kept, including the owner’s home if dogs are kept indoors.
Obtain a state license in order to breed and sell their sporting dogs.
Follow new state mandated standards of care for dogs, including new housing and enclosure requirements.
Have a veterinarian examine each dog before it can be sold.
Be prohibited from selling a dog less than 8 weeks of age. Many sporting dog breeders sell dogs before they reach 8 weeks old (and in some cases before they are even born). Typically, these dogs are not delivered to the new owner until the dog is old enough to be on its own.
In 2011, despite an outpouring of opposition from sporting and other dog owner organizations, the Texas legislature passed House Bill 1451. The bill placed many unnecessary regulations on dog owners who breed dogs. Fortunately, sporting dog owners were exempted from the bill.
Despite that exemption, newly introduced House Bill 1449 seeks to regulate those same individuals who were exempted from the 2011 bill.
“This bill is a back door attempt to regulate dog owners, like those owning sporting dogs, who weren’t regulated in the 2011 bill by calling them ‘dealers,’” said Jeremy Rine, U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance in-house counsel. “Animal rights groups in Texas will not be happy until dog breeders are run out of existence. Sportsmen and sporting dog owners need to contact their state representatives today to make sure this bill isn’t passed.”
The bill is currently pending in the House Committee on Licensing and Administrative Procedures.
Take Action! Texas sportsmen should contact their state representatives today and ask them to oppose House Bill 1449. Visit USSA’s Legislative Action Center to find your state representative’s contact information.