Boy, did the HSUS get this wrong.

Boy, did the HSUS get this wrong. 

According to a recent press release, the HSUS reviewed laws regulating commercial dog breeding facilities (wholesale), also known as “puppy mills,” and protecting consumers who purchase sick puppies to determine the best and worst state laws. 

Amazingly, New York was ranked in the top ten, coming in at number 8 –  even though its pet dealer law does not address commercial dog breeders.

According to the list included with the  March 12, 2012 press release from HSUS, New York ranks in the top 10 of states regulating puppy mills:



Puppy Mill State Law Rankings – 2011

1. Virginia

2. Pennsylvania

3. Oregon

4. New Hampshire

5. Washington

6. Missouri*

7. Colorado

8. New York

This list, supposedly, was based on an analysis of the existing law.  According to the release:

States were assigned points based on key elements either addressed or not addressed in their laws, including: mandatory licensure, criteria for coverage, frequency of inspections, caps on the number of dogs an operator can keep, the standards of care mandated for each dog, consumer protection provisions, and the severity of penalties for violations.

The NYS law was passed as a consumer protection bill.  It was designed, not to protect animals, but to protect consumers and ONLY APPLIES TO RETAIL SALES. Wholesale breeders that supply pet stores and laboratories are exempt from the law.

It does not apply to commercial kennels, has no penalty for unlicensed operation, has no cap on the number of dogs, only inspects once a year, does not report care violations to local authorities and there are no penalty for violations, except minimal fines, most often imposed for failing to list the license number in their ads. It also has no provisions to address internet sales.

Everyone seems to know this, except HSUS, apparently.

Now the HSUS has provided breeders and their supporters with a terrific tool…..the HSUS seal of approval for the lack of protection in New York State Law. 

What were they thinking???????

Please contact the HSUS and demand that they correct this misinformation and put the issue of commercial breeders and pet dealers on their agenda for their upcoming Humane Lobby Day in Albany. 

Here is the facebook page for  NY where you can post a comment:

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Letter to the Editor: Commercial Kennels in the Finger Lakes Region

Letter to the Editor:  Commercial Kennels in the Finger Lakes Region

Posted Saturday, February 25, 2012 @ 12:44 pm

Dear Editor,

The recent stories about the special use permit for a 500 dog kennel in Gorham certainly caught the public and the town officials by surprise. I applaud the Gorham Town Board for their deliberate approach to study the issue.; I am sure they are going to find a good solution for their community

But this should be a lesson for everyone in the Finger Lakes Region.

Unfortunately, many large scale breeding facilities are starting up in or relocating to the Finger Lakes region because New York does not have a strong and comprehensive state law regulating operation of these so-called ‘puppy mills.’ As a result, towns that have failed to plan for these facilities are often caught unaware when one comes to their community.

Members of the public, if they would like their town to look at the issue and limit the size of these kennels and the number of dogs in them, need to take action BEFORE the kennel is set up. Town officials need to learn what the public thinks about these businesses in their municipality.

Some towns have already looked at the issue and placed limits on commercial kennels, those with USDA licenses and those selling large numbers of dogs to pet stores, on line, to the public or to dealers. The Towns of Romulus, Seneca Falls and Geneva have already adopted local laws, after moratoria to study these facilities and to listen to the public, on both sides of the issue.

I urge animal lovers in each community to contact their local planning boards and other officials to find out what local laws-if any-are in place to insure that any pet breeding facility is run safely and humanely. The public was able to have its say in Gorham but if people do not make their voices heard in their own communities, this problem will come up again in other towns.

  Mary Anne Kowalski
  Romulus, NY

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