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Lawmakers send revisions to Missouri's "puppy mill" measure to the governor's desk

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April 14, 2011

Voting on the
Treatment of Animals
Ballot Measures
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SPRINGFIELD, Missouri: On April 13, 2011 the Missouri House of Representatives passed SB 113, revisions to 2010's Proposition B, with a vote of 85-71. Just one month earlier, the Senate voted 20-14 in favor of the proposal.[1]

Proposition B was approved by voters on November 3, 2010 by 51.6%. The initiated state statute proposed adopting new rules for dog-breeders, including capping the number of dogs that were used for breeding purposes, requiring resting periods between breeding and establishing other requirements.

Supporters of the legislative bill, included breeders in the state. Barb York, president of the Missouri Pet Breeders Association, said, "We’re pleased, and hopefully now we can move on and take care of our animals." Others said the changes were necessary to keep legitimate breeders in business and preserve the industry. Rep. Tom Loehner said, "The fact of the matter is, if this thing goes into effect, thousands of people are out of work, they’re out of a job and they lose their investment."[2]

In reaction to the approved bill, supporters of Proposition B said a referendum to repeal SB 113 is a possibility for 2012 should the governor enact the proposal. Barbara Schmitz of the Missourians for the Protection of Dogs said, "We think that it's a travesty that the General Assembly is essentially overturning the will of the people and stripping away all of the provisions of Prop B."[3]

The approved bill:[4][1]

  • removes the cap on owning 50 breeding dogs
  • allows licensing costs of up to $2,500 (instead of $500)
  • requires breeders to be inspected twice a year by a veterinarian in order to maintain a license
  • requires that food be made available to dogs at least every twelve hours and water must be checked and provided
  • stacked cages must be have impermeable floors to solids and liquids
  • allows for civil penalties and misdemeanor charges for repeat offenses and implement a $25 annual fee
    • any violations must be corrected within 180 days

In addition to the changes, lawmakers reportedly changed the name of the law from "Puppy Mill Cruelty Prevention Act" to "Canine Cruelty Prevention Act." The bill in full be read here.

The bill is pending the Governor of Missouri's signature.

See also

Ballotpedia News

Approveda Missouri Dog Breeding Regulation Initiative, Proposition B (2010)