>> Monday, January 26, 2009
..... update from ASPCA
PuppiesAs America ushers in a new era of federal leadership, many
state governments are also getting back to work—and at least one of
them is making puppy mill reform a priority. Last Sunday, the ASPCA
joined animal welfare advocates and Illinois lawmakers in Chicago to
announce the arrival of Chloe’s Bill, legislation that will help stamp
out the worst puppy mills in the Prairie State.
“Illinois has a unique opportunity to adopt one of the strongest
commercial breeding laws in the country,” says Cori Menkin, ASPCA
Senior Director of Legislative Initiatives. “As commercial breeding
increases throughout the United States, particularly in the Midwest,
it is reassuring that Illinois is recognizing the need for stronger
laws before the prevalence of puppy mills becomes a blight on the
As currently written, Chloe’s Bill would:
* Limit to 20 the number of unaltered dogs a breeder may possess
* Ban anyone convicted of felony-level animal cruelty from
acquiring a dog-breeding license
* Prohibit wire flooring in commercial breeding facilities and
create guidelines for appropriate heating, cooling and ventilation
* Require pet stores and breeders to provide customers with every
dog’s full medical history
* Establish penalties for violations, ranging from fines to animal
seizure and license revocation
Sponsored by State Rep. John Fritchey and State Senator Dan Kotowski,
Chloe’s Bill is named for a young cocker spaniel—rescued from a Macon
County, IL, puppy mill—who was present at Sunday’s press conference.
Now living with one of the animal control agents involved in the raid
on her kennel, Chloe is the sole survivor from her litter. Like
thousands of other commercial dog breeders in the U.S., the owners of
Chloe’s kennel focused on producing as many puppies as possible with
little regard for the physical and mental health of their animals. The
dogs found at this puppy mill were matted with feces and urine, and
infested with fleas and internal parasites. Many suffered from
deformed paws from living their lives on wire-floored cages.
As Rep. Fritchey explained to the media, “We are not trying to do
anything drastic; we’re not trying to do anything radical. We’re
trying to implement standards for what is humane care, for what is
decent care.” Fritchey added that although he expects the bill will
encounter some opposition, any dog breeder who would oppose it is
likely to be the type of breeder that should make consumers wary.
How can you help? It is animal lovers like you who bring about change.
Even if you don’t live in Illinois, what happens in one state becomes
easier to accomplish in others—so we need you in the fight. In the
coming weeks, the ASPCA Advocacy Center will email our Illinois
advocates, providing guidance on how they can join us in getting
Chloe’s Bill passed. But wherever you live, don’t miss out on this or
any other important legislative news from the ASPCA—please sign up to
receive animal advocacy-related emails.