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Discussion Starter #1
I have been reading a lot on the California Healthy Pet Act (AB 1634), mainly because our local kennel club voted to send some money to them to help in the legal battle...and also because I am interested to see where this is going to go.

The gist of the act from my understanding is that all animals will be required to be spayed and neutered at 4 months of age. It's been passed in the Legislative Council (on May 9) and apparently is going to the floor for consideration. Currently, these celebrities: Bob Barker and Nancy Burnet, Keely and Pierce Brosnan, Robert David Hall, Emmylou Harris, Ami James, Bill Maher, Cesar Millan, Kevin Nealon, William Petersen, Jillian Reynolds, Christian Serratos, Ben Stein, and Mike White voice their support for the California Healthy Pets Act.

From the website (www.cahealthypets.com):
The California Healthy Pets Act (AB 1634) would require the spaying and neutering of most cats and dogs by the time the pet is four months old. It is authored and was introduced by Assembly member Lloyd Levine.
Pet owners who have not spayed or neutered their pet would be cited and given time to spay or neuter their pets before a fine would be assessed.
Local animal control agencies would be responsible for enforcing the California Healthy Pets Act. A portion of the fines collected would be used to expand the availability of free or low-cost spay or neuter programs and other outreach efforts.

The California Healthy Pets Act exempts:
* Purebred dogs and cats whose owners obtain a permit
* Dogs who work as guide dogs, service dogs, or signal dogs
* Dogs who are used by law enforcement agencies for law enforcement or rescue activities
* Dogs and cats whose veterinarian determines that due to age, poor health, or illness it is unsafe to spay or neuter them
* Non-resident show dogs and dogs brought into the state for exhibition
The link to the text of the bill is here: http://www.cahealthypets.com/pdf/ab_1634_bill_20070509_amended_asm_v95.pdf

The portion of the bill that addresses how people can obtain an intact pet permit have to meet these requirements:
(1) The owner demonstrates, by providing a copy of his or her business license and federal and state tax number, or by other proof, as required by the local jurisdiction or its authorized local animal control agency, that he or she is doing business and is licensed as a breeder at a location for which the local jurisdiction or its authorized local animal control agency has issued a breeder license.
(2) The owner sufficiently demonstrates, as determined in the discretion of the local jurisdiction or its authorized local animal control agency, that his or her cat or dog is a valid breed that is recognized by an approved registry or association, and complies with at least one of the following:
(A) His or her cat or dog is used to show or compete and has competed in at least one legitimate show or sporting competition, hosted by, or under the approval of, a recognized registry or association, within the last two years, or by whatever proof is requested by the authorized local animal control agency that the cat or dog is being trained to show or compete and is too young to have yet competed.
(B) The cat or dog has earned, or if under two years old, is in the process of earning, a conformation, obedience, agility, carting, herding, protection, rally, sporting, working, or other title from an approved purebred registry or association.
(3) The owner provides proof to the local jurisdiction or its authorized local animal control agency that the dog is being trained or is documented as having been appropriately trained and meets the definition of guide dog, service dog, or signal dog, as set forth in subdivisions (d), (e), and (f) of Section 365.5 of the Penal Code.
(4) The owner provides proof to the local jurisdiction or its authorized local animal control agency that the dog is being trained, or is documented as having been appropriately trained, and actively used by law enforcement agencies for law enforcement or rescue activities.
(5) The owner of a cat or dog provides a letter to the local jurisdiction or its authorized local animal control agency from a California licensed veterinarian stating that due to age, poor health, or illness, it is unsafe to spay or neuter the cat or dog. This letter shall include the veterinarian’s license number and shall, if this information is available, include the duration of the condition of the dog or cat, and the date by which the dog or cat may be safely spayed or neutered.
(b) An unaltered cat or dog for which an intact permit was issued who ceases to meet the requirements of subdivision (a) is subject to the spay and neuter requirements set forth in Section 122336.1.
(c) (1) The amount of the fee for an intact permit shall be determined by the local jurisdiction, and shall be no more than what is reasonably necessary to fund the administration of that jurisdiction’s intact permit program.
(2) A local jurisdiction shall waive the intact permit fee for an unaltered cat or dog that meets the requirements of paragraph (3) or (4) of subdivision (a), and may waive all or part of the intact permit fee for an unaltered cat or dog meeting the requirements of paragraph (5) of subdivision (a).
(d) Nothing in this section shall prohibit a local jurisdiction from adopting or enforcing a more restrictive spay or neuter program pursuant to Section 122331, provided that the program allows for a cat or dog to be temporarily or permanently exempted from a spay or neuter requirement for the reasons set forth in paragraphs (3) to (5), inclusive, of subdivision (a).
(e) Any owner of a cat or dog who is not a resident of California shall be exempted from the permit requirements set forth in this chapter if the owner provides proof, as determined by the local jurisdiction or its authorized local animal control agency, that the cat or dog is temporarily in California for training, showing, or any other legitimate reason, as determined by the local jurisdiction.
I am interested in y'alls thoughts on this. I bolded a few areas that I found of interest to me. 1.) Cesar Millan. I think that so many people follow his advice as the gospel truth that it will alone draw supporters. 2.) Local animal control agencies. If any of them in California are like the ones in Michigan, there will not be really much enforcement of anything. Our AC does the bare minimum.

I am torn on this issue for a lot of reasons. I do NOT believe that reputable breeders are the cause of over-population. I do think that BYBers and puppymillers are mostly the problem. There has to be some way to control people making money on dogs.

If you go on YouTube and search AB 1634....there are a lot of videos posted for and against this bill. I found this one interesting: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hf99USHiuRY They talk about needing business licenses and breeders not paying taxes on the sale of their products...which has always been a curiosity point for me.

Here is something from www.petpac.net, the website that is for the opposing side....
TOP TEN REASONS TO OPPOSE AB 1634
"THE PET EXTINCTION ACT"

1. Costs to local taxpayers of over $500 million to shelter, spay, neuter and euthanize newly abandoned dogs and cats.
Many owners who can’t afford or unwilling to pay for their pets mandatory surgical sterilization will abandon their pets to animal shelters. Past experience with spaying/neuter laws have proven this to be fact.
2. Leads to the extinction of all mixed breeds dogs and cats.
There are no exceptions. Proponents are saying “NO MORE MUTTS!”
3. Eliminates Guide Dogs for the Blind and Service Dogs for the Disabled.
Blind and disabled Californians have a legal right under the Americans with Disabilities Act to these dogs. The proponents claim these dogs will be exempted, but this exemption does not protect the breeding dogs used by these programs. Under AB 1634 there would be no dogs available in the future to be trained for this important service. That’s why Assistance Dogs International Inc., Canine Companions for Independence, and the International Association of Assistance Dogs Partners strongly oppose AB 1634.
4. Eliminates K-9’s for police departments in future years.
Producing the working-quality German Shepherd Dogs and Belgian Malinois for law enforcement is a process that is expensive, time-consuming and requires a high level of expertise. These dogs must mature (eighteen months to two years old) before they can begin to be tested in advanced training, obedience and protection work to determine their working abilities, temperament and physical characteristics. AB 1634 makes this breed-selection process impossible. The “exemption” for police dogs is meaningless beyond the current generation. That’s why the California Organization of Police and Sheriffs, North American Police Work Dog Association, Western States Police Canine Association, and Canine Specialized Search Team are opposed to this bill.
5. Creates new local government bureaucracies with the power to impound your currently licensed dogs and cats and force their surgical sterilization without your consent.
You can then face civil and criminal penalties for refusing to sterilize your pets. These local government bureaucracies cost taxpayers millions and will drain much needed local funding away from essential public services such as public safety.
6. Prevents Rescue Organizations from saving cats and dogs.
These practices become illegal under this legislation. Animal rescuers in California will face civil penalties of $500 per animal and possible criminal penalties for possessing unneutered or unspayed dogs or cats. AB 1634 Article 2, Section 122336.1 (a) and (b)
7. Penalizes law abiding pet owners and does not address issues such as feral cats and pet education.
Long term health problems may result from early sterilization of dogs and cats. Sterilizing dogs before maturity more than triples the risk of bone cancer. Shouldn’t law abiding citizens have the right to choose when to neuter or spay their pets?
8. Devastates California’s $1.5 billion beef cattle industry and $54 million sheep industry.
Both of these industries depend on working stock dog breeding that would be eliminated under AB 1634.
9. Facts show spaying/neutering ordinances can hurt more than help the problem of pet shelter populations.
New laws have proven to cause people to avoid licensing pets, as a result there is a loss of revenue for animal control shelters. According to data from Veterinary Public Health, while our citizen population has shows steady growth over the last 30 years, the impounds of dogs into shelters has declined indicating we are making progress on the overpopulation of dogs and cats.
10. Reduces tourism as dogs and cat shows disappear, losing millions of dollars in revenue to California business owners.
Say NO to AB 1634, it’s the Pet Extinction Act
The problem is...many of these things are addressed. So...I don't know that this will deter people from voting against this bill. I think the most disturbing part of this list is #5. If my dog got away and ended up in a pound and was altered before I got there to provide proof of my intact license, I would be pissed.

I think that if this passes...it will soon come to a lot more states...and if they are going to do this...they need to institute basic rules for pet ownership.

I am still in debate about this...but I am interested to hear your thoughts....let's discuss...and please be civil.
 

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I am torn about the 4 month rule. At the request of my vet, I waited until the boys were "mature" before snipping. I wonder how many vets have put in their two cents on this topic. I would like to see vets weigh in on both sides of the fence. The vets that believe in early "fixing", and the vets that believe in after maturing "fixing".

I am not opposed to the law, I just think that too many people will not abide by it. The same as any law. Speeding, seat belts, etc. People break the law until they see a cop up ahead.

How are the AC officers going to monitor this? Are they going to go around to each house and say, let me see if your dog has his hoo ha's or not? I doubt it seriously.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
CenTexLabs said:
Are they going to go around to each house and say, let me see if your dog has his hoo ha's or not? I doubt it seriously.
LMAO!!! Exactly what I was thinking. Perhaps they are thinking that the low cost spaying and neutering will be a benefit.
 

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CenTexLabs said:
How are the AC officers going to monitor this? Are they going to go around to each house and say, let me see if your dog has his hoo ha's or not? I doubt it seriously.
Don't laugh. It has been done before. Ask the people of Colorado who have had their pit bulls confiscated and put to sleep. :'(

I'm 100% against this bill. You can't legislate common sense. It's going to cost millions to enforce this bill but no one has thought far enough ahead to figure out where the money will be coming from.

I for one will never travel to CA again with my dogs if this bill passes. Yes, if you are from out of state you are exempt but, like Dani said, what happens if they get your animal and sterilize them before you can prove that you are from out of state? Nope...not a risk I'm willing to take. I decide what is best for my pets health, not some minimum wage croney thank you very much.

Personally, I think a far better idea is to take the irresponsible idiots (puppy mills or those who breed mixes intentionally or who don't know where their intact animal is at this particular moment, etc) and sterilize THEM (the people, not the animals). I think that would help immensely in this issue.
 

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I don't think you can sterilize stupidity, unfortunately.

We have a low cost clinic here. I am using them tomorrow. However, it took me a month to get in. We need more clinics like that so that people can get constant access to these services. ($120 for both boys at 70 and 80 pounds is excellent.)
 

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I'm going to use my reply to a similar thread in a different forum:
...the bill that is in question in California right now ONLY affects those who already follow the rules. Ie- those breeders who already have a kennel license or those who ALREADY have their animals/pets licensed. They will do nothing but make it tremendously difficult and expensive for those small-scale reputable breeders who are interested in abiding by the laws, and breed for the right reasons.

Those who are backyard breeders or puppy mills (or puppy brokers) will fly under the radar as they have always done... this will NOT affect them. And unfortunately, there is absolutely no way that any of the city or county animal control agencies have the staffing or the funding to "find the bad guys" who are continuing to fly under the radar with unlicensed, intact animals, breeding without a health clearance in the bunch and producing unsound puppies and kittens. They have already stated that fact, many times over. Large-scale puppy breeders (ie- puppy mills) that aren't "flying under the radar" will still be able to afford to license themselves and thus, continue to breed...mostly because of the tremendous profit they enjoy by this type of large-scale breeding. All of these "breeders" are the reason these bills are even being discussed- the same bills that simply won't touch them: the true problem.

These "healthy pet" bills that are being debated use the "pet overpopulation" argument as a way to play with people's hearts and emotions with regards to these bills in hopes of gaining more support from the general public...when in fact, very few people have read anything further about them and thus don't understand that they will really have virtually no effect on overpopulation and will, in fact, adversely affect any responsible breeding and those who wish to get a well-bred, healthy purebred cat or dog. Most large CA cities and counties, and their shelters, have been unable to prove anything other than an already dramatic reduction in the numbers of animals in shelters over the past decade. There will be nothing more than a negative effect on the reputable breeders in the state of CA (and soon everywhere across the nation, I'm sure), trying to do a good and reputable job of breeding dogs (and only because they actually want to improve the dog breeds they're involved with and compete with the products of their hard work and years of research in search of "the best of the best").
AKC has already threatened to "disallow" sanctioned shows, events, and matches in CA if this eventually passes, due to the potentially catastrophic effects that these bills could have for the purebred dog fancy.

Directly off of the AKC site:

Quote:
AB 1634 Amended Again - Continued Opposition Needed!

California Assembly Bill 1634 has been amended again. The amendments will provide an exemption to out-of-state fanciers if the owner can prove that the cat or dog is temporarily in California for training, showing or any other legitimate reason as determined by the local jurisdiction.

The bill also will allow purebred dog owners and breeders to qualify for and purchase an intact animal permit if they meet one of the following criteria:
The animal has competed in at least one show in the previous two years.
The cat or dog has earned, or if under two years of age is in the process of earning a title.
While the amendments address some of our concerns, the AKC continues to oppose AB 1634. Contrary to proponent's claims that purebred dog breeders are exempt from the proposal, the bill will require breeders pay an undetermined annual fee for every intact dog they possess. This financial burden will penalize responsible breeders and owners for a purported problem they are not responsible for.

Additionally, few jurisdictions in California currently have breeder's licenses. Creation and administration of the new intact animal permit and/or the breeder's licenses will divert valuable animal control resources from things like protecting the public from stray dogs and investigating animal cruelty.

As always, the American Kennel Club opposes the concept of breeding permits, breeding bans, or mandatory spay/neuter of purebred dogs. Instead, the AKC supports reasonable and enforceable laws that protect the welfare and health of purebred dogs and do not restrict the rights of breeders and owners who take their responsibilities seriously. We strongly support and actively promote a wide range of programs to educate the public about responsible breeding practices and the responsibilities of dog ownership.

Here are a couple more websites that refer to this bill:
http://saveourdogs.net/
http://www.ab1634.com/

People REALLY need to educate themselves about these bills before jumping on the bandwagon. There is a TON of information out there.

JMHO. As the bumper stickers around here state: AB 1634 is Bad for Good Dogs.
 

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Great post, Julie.

Hopefully lots of people read it and the links. Many people think this is only a CA issue but they are dead wrong. This type of legislature is popping up all over the country...Louisville, Albuqurque, now CA. It's just a matter of time until it comes to a community near YOU.

CaliforniaLabLover said:
The cat or dog has earned, or if under two years of age is in the process of earning a title.
Most dogs don't start showing (at least not in the companion/performance events) until they are 2 and have a brain. They are not going to have a title or even be "in the process of earning" one at under 2 yrs old. :mad: Many breeds do not mature until 2 or 3 or later so even conformation titles are iffy by age 2. I know some have said they would just get a CGC on a young dog but a CGC is a certificate, not a title so will that be sufficient?

Hey! I just thought of an idea. The law should be that EVERY puppy/kitten is microchipped with the breeder's info AND the owner's info. Then when these animals come into the shelter they can fine/bill both parties directly. That would force breeder's to become responsible since they will have a financial impact if they aren't. ;D
 

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You know, that isn't a bad idea. However, you can't microchip a litter that happened because some idiot let his intact male jump the fence to get in with dumbasses intact female in heat. I doubt seriously that either party will fess up to the responsibility.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
great post Julie....

this part:
Those who are backyard breeders or puppy mills (or puppy brokers) will fly under the radar as they have always done... this will NOT affect them. And unfortunately, there is absolutely no way that any of the city or county animal control agencies have the staffing or the funding to "find the bad guys" who are continuing to fly under the radar with unlicensed, intact animals, breeding without a health clearance in the bunch and producing unsound puppies and kittens. They have already stated that fact, many times over. Large-scale puppy breeders (ie- puppy mills) that aren't "flying under the radar" will still be able to afford to license themselves and thus, continue to breed...mostly because of the tremendous profit they enjoy by this type of large-scale breeding. All of these "breeders" are the reason these bills are even being discussed- the same bills that simply won't touch them: the true problem.
do you think there are ANY options to curtail the true problem? And have they talked about enforcement at all?
 

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Agree with the statement you cannot sterilize stupidity and you can't legislate common sense.
I agree something more needs to be done about the pet overpopulation problem. But I would to see something that targets the BYB's and puppy mills exclusively and not the responsible breeders, pet enthusiasts and fanciers.
Great post, Julie. Copied and saved it.
I am opposed to this bill and have donated to the Political Action group.
 

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I'm opposed to this bill for all the reasons Julie mentioned. I think this is a well-intentioned bill that will have terrible unintended consequences while failing to solve the problem it's intended to solve.
 

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Great post Julie. If this is enforced like everything else in California you won't see much happen at all except to those that don't need enforcing.

IMHO I don't think this addresses the problem. It is treating a sympton and not fixing the root cause of the problem - BYB and puppymills. I cannot believe how many people I meet that have gotten their labs from this particular BYB here in California. I know this place is a puppymill - and I'm sure they will continue.

I won't be surprised to see this pass.
 

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I'm in Louisville and as someone above mentioned we just had a similar law passed here. I'm for the most part opposed to it and honestly haven't seen any difference here other than the number of entrants to the yearly AKC show were a lot less this year than last. The AC around here was way to busy before to keep up with the problems there is no way they are going to be able to enforce any of the new laws. They also increased the licence fees from $7/yr to $9.50 for an altered pet and from $35/yr to $50/yr for an intact pet. The thing is they admitted when they were proposing this bill that only 15% of the cities pets were licenced so why do they think raising the fee is going to help get these people to licence them??? It's not. The local HS has set up a low cost spay/neuter program that is getting increasingly busy which is a good thing but it has nothing to do with this bill.
 

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I know that in some places there is not alot of enforcement. Where I live in California we get one or two vists a year from the local animal control. They go door to door and ask to see your dogs lisence. They also have a list of the dogs currently registered to your adress. I live in the county not a city but I imagine they do the same thing in the cities. it is very hard to ge a breeder/kennel lisence here you have to file permits and get aproval from all your neighbors etc and the city or county can turn you down if you aren't zoned for it. And there are not alot of areas zoned for it here and those that are are usually in comercial areas so no homes. So if you have a dog that you want to breed once every other year you are pretty much out of luck. Now the place I got Amber from would be exempt because they are a lisenced buisness and have between 15 and 20 litters a year. none of the parents are champions or anything like that. Also to keep up with the puppy demand here in California a rather large number of puppies are smuggled across the border often at very young ages. I see a very great boom in the comercial breeders and puppy smugglers and BYB's if the bill passes. After all when there is a demand for puppies people will figure out a way to get and sell them. Leagaly you can bring puppies into california if they are older than 8 weeks old, but if they are over 4 months old you would have to pay a fine if they aren't spayed. but you could dump any puppies right before they turn 4 months old off at the pound and not face a fine.
Not a very pretty picture.
I would rather pay a $1 tax on every bag of dog food for spay and neuter clinics. Just a thought.

Kelly and Amber
 

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Discussion Starter #15
interesting thoughts Kelly.

I am troubled by things for and against in this matter. There has to be a solution somewhere.
 

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Sounds like beurocrats sticking their fingers in all of the wrong places. The intentions are honourable, but they're going to hurt the wrong people (and dogs). :-\
 

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Hmm... this doesn't really affect me in Canada, but it might one day soon, I suppose.

From what you guys have described I think the bill really skirts around the issue, which is irresponsible breeding. Why couldn't they just ban breeding without a license (given to those who meet certain criteria, and not just those who pay the fees) of some kind? wouldn't that make more sense, and be a little easier to police? Maybe not, I'm just thinking out loud.

I'm also against the "four month" thing, I think that's way too young, especially for males.
 

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I am FOR the requirement to spay and neuter.
BUT, I while I think 4 months is too young, I understand why they would make it that young.

The pet population is way out of control.
 

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mich said:
I am FOR the requirement to spay and neuter.
BUT, I while I think 4 months is too young, I understand why they would make it that young.

The pet population is way out of control.
Actually not true. There is a lot of info about this on http://www.saveourdogs.net/population.html

One article:

Facts about California Shelter Statistics

Data from the California Department of Health Services, Veterinary Public Health section shows that intake and euthanasia rates for dogs in California have been falling steadily for decades. Althought there is still a way to go, the state is on the right track. The NAIA Shelter Project has detailed statistics for local jurisdictions and the state as a whole.
Euthanasia rates of dogs are down an amazing 59% since 1995, and a whopping 86% from the mid 1970s.


The issue isn't so much with puppies/litters but with the amount of unwanted adult dogs being turned in/turned out when their irresponsible owners no longer want to deal with them.

This info is from another article on the Save Our Dogs website:

Why Dogs are in Shelters

A study Exploring the Cat and Dog Surplus Problem listed the top 10 reasons that dogs are relinquished to shelters as

1. Moving
2. Landlord issues
3. Cost of pet maintenance
4. No time for pet
5. Inadequate facilities
6. Too many pets in home
7. Pet illness(es)
8. Personal problems
9. Biting
10. No homes for littermates

Most of reasons that dogs are relinquished to shelters have nothing to do with spay/neuter.
 

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The one thing that really stuck out to me is this:
1) The owner demonstrates, by providing a copy of his or her business license and federal and state tax number, or by other proof, as required by the local jurisdiction or its authorized local animal control agency, that he or she is doing business and is licensed as a breeder at a location for which the local jurisdiction or its authorized local animal control agency has issued a breeder license.
Many puppy mills are akc licensed as well as business licensed. I would hate to think all the puppy mills continue pumping out puppies while good breeders will be shut down.

It is a very sad day when all our pets will be taken from us for the good of the society. Being an owner of an already targeted breed I am very aware of what is being done to the dog. We, dog lovers, must all stand up together and fight BSL. We must not let our breeds become nothing other than the american mutt with major health problems. Drug dealers, dog fighters and puppy money makers will find another breed and another way to do their business. The labrador is no exception. And if we think this will not effect our breed we are all wrong!
 
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