Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wyoming animal abuse bill targets hoarders, puppy mill operators-Billings Gazette

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — a bill that turns animal thieves and Puppy Mill operators scraped through its first test the Senate Tuesday.

The American Kennel Club and other groups have been lobbying against 100 Senate File via email and fax to lawmakers.

The proposal is passed on a vote of 15-10. You need 16 votes to clear the Senate.

Sponsor of the Bill, Sen. Gerry Geis, R-Basin, said that its purpose is to protect pets from abuse as well as previously approved legislation protected large animals.

The law says that an operator of a mill puppy is guilty of animal abuse if the animals are kept in poor conditions and the dog or cat breeding facility is managed with an emphasis on profit over animal welfare ".

The Bill defines a Puppy Mill as a structure with more than 50 puppies.

It also says a hoarder who has 15 or more animals in substandard conditions is guilty of animal abuse.

Geis mentioned a woman County Park that was 134 cats.

The Senate took the numbers from the Bill, an amendment offered by Senator Fred Emerick, R-Cheyenne, a veterinarian.

Emerick said owner of a dog with two Labrador who have two litters a year might be considered a hoarder.

Senator Charles Scott, R-Casper and Senator Bruce Burns, R-Sheridan, said that they have received comments from people who oppose the vagueness of the Bill.

Scott, a dog breeder, said the owner "would be at the mercy of those enforcing the law because the rules are not clear."

Burns said that the American Kennel Club is concerned about the word "regraded". Emerick added that the American Kennel Club do also like the phrase "Puppy Mill" and the definition of accumulation.

The phrase PROFITABILITY "above the welfare of the animals" is vague, he said.

"I think we can fix the Bill," said Emerick.

The law gives $ 50,000 to reimburse counties for expenditure for the County law enforcement.

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