USDA/APHIS Proposals – Action Needed Now!

There are important USDA/APHIS regulatory changes pending which may impact your kennel. Please read the following and lend your support. The deadline for the comment period is July 16, 2012.Thank you,Dave SteeleISDRAFriday, July 06, 2012As previously reported, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has proposed changes to federal breeder regulations that would categorize many small/hobby breeders as commercial breeders and subject them to unnecessary federal licensing, regulation and inspections. This proposed rule creates unreasonable hardships that could threaten the future of a vast number of responsible small hobby breeders and the very existence of some rare breeds.Under the proposed regulations, breeders who maintain more than four “breeding females” (this term is not defined) who sell even a single puppy to a purchaser who does not physically enter your facilities to observe the animals for sale would now be regulated in accordance with USDA standards. The unintended consequences these proposed regulations would include taking away the public’s opportunity to obtain puppies from small responsible breeders, who in many cases have dedicated their lives to breeding for health, breed type and temperament.WHAT YOU CAN DO:It is imperative that anyone who is concerned with this proposal and who has not already made comment to the Animal and Plant Health and Inspection Service (APHIS), the division of the USDA responsible for enforcing the federal Animal Welfare Act, to join with the AKC to express your concerns about these proposed regulations and the impact they could have on you and other responsible breeders. The deadline for submissions is July 16. You may share your concerns directly with USDA/APHIS directly by either:Online at http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=APHIS-2011-0003-0001. Or via postal mail at:Docket No. APHIS–2011–0003Regulatory Analysis and DevelopmentPPD, APHIS, Station 3A–03.84700 River Road, Unit 118Riverdale, MD 20737–1238The AKC has also created the Join With the AKC to Protect Responsible Small Breeders petition in response to the proposed rule. Our goal is to demonstrate to USDA/APHIS the solidarity among concerned citizens about the harsh and unintended consequences that the proposed regulations would have on responsible small and hobby breeders. Please join us by signing the petition before July 15, and encourage your friends to sign too! AKC will send the petition along with AKC’s official comments to the USDA.RESOURCES:The AKC has created a USDA/APHIS REGULATIONS RESOURCE PAGE to help explain all aspects of the proposal. The page includes a Frequently Asked Questions section and additional resources. Here is the link: http://www.akc.org/governmentrelations/usda_aphis.cfmFor more information, contact AKC’s Government Relations Department at (919) 816-3720, or e-mail doglaw@akc.org.

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