Protecting Responsible Dog Ownership in a Competitive

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Transcript Protecting Responsible Dog Ownership in a Competitive

Protecting Responsible Dog Ownership in
a Competitive Political Environment
Presented by Walt Bebout
Director of Canine Legislation
American Kennel Club
Discussion Focuses
• Challenges – Threats to responsible dog
ownership and their sources.
• Opportunities – Understanding the
motivations of elected officials and how to
capitalize on those motivations for positive
• AKC Resources – The tools necessary to
succeed in the political process.
AKC Mission Statement
• The American Kennel Club is dedicated to
upholding the integrity of its Registry,
promoting the sport of purebred dogs and
breeding for type and function. Founded in
1884, the AKC and its affiliated
organizations advocate for the purebred
dog as a family companion, advance
canine health and well-being, work to
protect the rights of all dog owners and
promote responsible dog ownership.
Responsible Ownership Issues
• Breed specific laws (BSL) – Dangerous Dog
• Breeding restrictions (MSN) – Breeding Permits
• Statewide “Breeders” bills
• Limit/zoning/nuisance ordinances
• Cruelty to Animals
• Guardianship versus Ownership
• Consumer Protection – Animal “Lemon Laws”
Challenges Inherent in the Political
• Fifty State Legislatures
• 3141 Counties in the US (parishes in
Louisiana, boroughs in Alaska)
• More than 30,000 incorporated cities in the
United States.
• More than 33,141 local governmental
entities in the US.
Perceptions of problems produce
demands for public policy response
• Breed specific legislation proposals are
almost always the result of an incident in a
• Mandatory spay/neuter or breeder permits
are forwarded as solutions to perceived
pet overpopulation/shelter issues
AKC Resources
• AKC Website:
• Email: [email protected]
• Canine Legislation Department Phone
Number : 919.816.3721
AKC Resources
• Taking Command (electronic newsletter
addressing legislative issues)
• Legislative Alerts
• Bill/ordinance analysis
• Assistance/intervention in legislative process
• Outreach capability to AKC constituents via
email and regular mail
• Seminars at dog events
• Brochures
Make Your Contact Count
Disagree Diplomatically
Preparing for Action
Preserve Your Rights as a Dog Owner
Economic Impact of Dog Shows
Public Relations Tips and Tools
Information: Packets
Dangerous Dogs/BSL
Preventing Breeding Restrictions
Consumer Protection/Puppy Lemon Laws
Dogs in Parks
AKC Position Statements
Organizing State Federations
Canine Legislation Department
Partnering Resources
State Federations
National Parent Clubs
Local Dog Clubs
Legislative Liaisons
Untapped Resources
AKC Registrants and Event Participants
Purebred dog owners
Pet owners
Coalition formation with animal interest
Why We Fight for Responsible Dog