Wednesday, October 3, 2007

PA- "Importing" dogs from other states

The state of dog imports
As rescued animals find homes across state lines, new concerns emerge.
By JON RUTTER, Staff writer
Sunday News
Published: Sep 30, 2007 12:08 AM EST

LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa - Spike has come a long way, in more ways than one.Lancaster resident Steve Borruto contends that his black-and-white mixed-breed puppy was sickly when Harrisburg-based Castaway Critters put him up for adoption in June.Castaway Critters got Spike from a shelter in Virginia. Director Barbara Holmes disputes Borruto's claim that the rescue group knowingly turned over a pup infected with kennel cough and coccidia, an intestinal microbe.Spike, who lived in a foster home before he was adopted, has recovered.But some animal advocates see in the dispute a cautionary tale about importing dogs.Nobody knows exactly how many dogs are being brought into Pennsylvania from other states each year. The tally appears to be growing and is likely in the thousands, according to Jessie L. Smith, the state's deputy secretary for dog-law enforcement."It's somewhat controversial because there are plenty of Pennsylvania dogs that need homes."But others say the burgeoning trend toward cooperating and transporting animals around the country allows shelters and rescue groups to place more dogs that would otherwise be euthanized.Adoption demands vary widely, and welfare organizations have become more sophisticated about meeting them, noted Megan Gallagher Clark, director of community outreach at the Humane League of Lancaster County."We feel we're all in this together," Clark said. The real problem, especially in puppy-mill states such as Pennsylvania and Missouri, is mass production of puppies.If a family from North Carolina adopts a pup from Missouri, she added, "That's still one less animal that's homeless."Travels with FidoThe Humane League, 2195 L.300incoln Highway East, does not often handle out-of-state animals.Most of the 9,000 cats and 4,000 dogs that come in over a typical year are local, according to Clark. "Our first mission is to place our adoptable animals in our county."But adoption markets vary by community.There's more demand for big dogs in upstate Pennsylvania and little ones in Philadelphia. Meanwhile, Clark explained, one shelter might be overwhelmed by dogs taken in a seizure while others want for animals. Special-needs pets can be another difficult fit.And so the groups cooperate.Clark said the Humane League works informally with facilities in Chester, Berks and Dauphin counties and also posts animals on, a national listing.The adoption movement grew more mobile in 2003 when the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and PETsMart Charities launched a pilot "Rescue Waggin" program to transport dogs from 15 overflowing shelters in Indiana, Tennessee, Kentucky and northern Wisconsin.Animal refugees from Hurricane Katrina further opened the transport pipeline, Clark said.But some animal advocates resist the idea of shuttling dogs around the nation.They say spay/neuter programs would help solve the pet-overpopulation problem more substantively."I honestly believe that Pennsylvania dogs should be given first priority," said Jenny Stephens of North Penn Puppy Mill Watch in Lansdale."A lot of the dogs they bring up [from Southern states] are little ones" that are more adoptable than older animals given up by their owners. And, inevitably, some of the pets are sick.Borruto, the owner of Spike, contends that Castaway Critters should reimburse him for $300 in veterinary bills.Barbara Holmes said her five-year-old, volunteer group would soon fold if it paid post-adoption vet bills.According to an adoption contract completed by Borruto's girlfriend, the group provides fundamental veterinary care for all of its dogs and puppies but cannot guarantee that the animals are sickness-free.The state is entering the fray. Proposed guidelines would require rescue groups handling 26 dogs o r more a year to buy licenses or kennel tags for their animals.Pennsylvania would check to make sure animals have rabies shots, Jessie Smith said, "but we wouldn't go and inspect their [foster] home the way we would a kennel."Much responsibility falls to animal-welfare organizations and pet owners to maintain the highest standards, said Kim Intino, director of animal-sheltering issues for the Humane Society of the United States."There's always the risk" of an animal getting sick no matter where it comes from, Intino said. "It's not a very simple thing ... to transport animals for adoption."But neither is it necessarily bad, according to Clark and others."If someone started bringing truckloads of cats here, that would be a problem," Clark acknowledged.That hasn't happened.Nor have out-of-state pups displaced older local animals that would otherwise be taken home, said Joan Brown, the Humane League president and chief executive officer."We most assuredly do" have puppies and young dogs for adoption, Brown said. "We get an awful lot of owner surrenders ... all ages, all sizes, all types."Adoption rates have risen slightly in the last couple of years, according to Brown.People take home 51 percent of the animals that come to the shelter, said Kerry Flanagan, managing director of operations.About 70 percent of the dogs and 30 percent of the cats find a berth, she added; rescue groups get some of the unwanted animals but the majority are euthanized."I hate to think of us as being in competition," Brown said of distant animal-welfare organizations."They're in the same position we're in. They're desperately trying to find homes for animals."

PA- Groups Blast Dog Law Proposal

Groups blast dog law proposal

Thursday, 27 September 2007
Staff Writer

Sportsmen’s groups from across the state and beyond believe that proposed regulations aimed at cracking down on abusive commercial dog breeding operations will negatively impact small-scale breeders.
The proposed changes to Pennsylvania’s “Dog Law Enforcement” regulations are so stringent, the groups believe, that they could eventually put small sporting dog kennels and hobby breeders out of business.While opponents agree that something should be done to stop abusive commercial breeders, they don’t believe that a breeder who turns out a few puppies each year should be regulated in the same way as a kennel that produces thousands of puppies annually.Groups also take issue with the regulations because, they claim, no one in the sporting dog community was consulted for input.“The regulations put forth what would be akin to applying the same set of regulations to a factory that are applied to a mom and pop hardware store,” said Beth Ruth, director of communications for the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA), which is against the proposals. “The regulations do not distinguish between a large scale breeder and a hobby breeder.”Dozens of sportsmen’s and dog-breeding groups recently formed the USSA’s Sporting Dog Defense Coalition (SDDC) to protect the interests of sporting dog enthusiasts who hunt and participate in field trials.The SDDC – as well as other dog organizations, dog fanciers and animal rescue groups – have been urging Gov. Ed Rendell and state lawmakers to rewrite Dog Law Enforcement regulations to distinguish between large- and small-scale breeders.The regulations were introduced in December by the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement. They would classify an establishment that has 26 or more dogs as a kennel, and as such, they would be required to meet numerous health, safety and welfare standards.Ruth explained that the SDDC agrees with the regulations’ goals of protecting consumers, animals and reputable breeders. But what is required to meet those goals, she said, could serve to “cripple” small-scale breeders.Under the proposed regulations, each dog must be exercised on a leash for at least 20 minutes each day. Allowing the dog to run – or hunt – is not acceptable and a day of missed exercise requires an excuse from a veterinarian.Also, air exchangers must be installed in kennels, and the temperature must be regulated. In addition, if there is rust on a fence or a crack in the concrete, those issues must be immediately addressed.“These regulations are a lot more stringent than regulations for day care providers,” Ruth said, noting that a day care center would not be shut down if rust is found on a fence.Kennel pens that are currently in compliance with state and federal standards would need to be doubled in size. The Department of Agriculture estimates the cost of renovations would be about $10,000 for each kennel – and all kennels would have to be upgraded.“Right now, there is not one kennel in Pennsylvania that is up to the proposed code,” Ruth said.Kennel owners must also record information about exercising, feeding and cleaning. Opponents say that for a kennel containing 50 dogs, owners would have to complete 300 different forms each day. Those found in non-compliance of any regulation face costly fines and confiscation of dogs.Without costly renovations and a staff, Ruth said it would be impossible to raise dogs as required under the new regulations. Those who continue to raise dogs, she said, will likely charge an exorbitant price for them in an attempt to recoup costs.“Sportsmen are concerned that the regulations will drive the cost of a hunting dog through the roof,” Ruth said.“These regulations will drive sporting dog kennels and hobby breeders out of business,” said Rob Sexton, USSA vice president for government affairs. “They will apply to fox hunts, field trials and most houndsmen. These folks do not operate puppy mills. They should not be treated like criminals.”John Kline, Harrisburg, a lobbyist representing the USSA, said that when public comment was being taken on the proposed regulations, about 15,000 comments were received.“That was the most in history,” he said. “This is a very emotional issue.”The Department of Agriculture is expected to issue its response to those comments in October or November. Thereafter, the regulations will either be accepted or revamped.The proposed changes were recently reviewed by the Pennsylvania Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC), the independent agency charged with studying regulations to determine whether they are in the best interest of the public.“The IRRC typically releases a 2- or 3-page report on the regulations it reviews. For this, the report was 22 pages,” Kline noted, and said he found the IRRC’s comments on the proposed regulations “scathing.”The IRRC wrote that the costs to renovate kennels would “far exceed what could be recovered by adoption fees for puppies or dogs.” It also asked that the Department of Agriculture explain the reason for its suggestion to manage all kennels with a uniform set of requirements, and asks how certain requirements – such as amount of exercise – were determined.Furthermore, the IRRC wrote, “We strongly encourage the department to organize stakeholder meetings with representatives from all types of kennels to develop a full understanding of their operations, dogs and clients. In this way, it can develop standards that will protect the health and safety of dogs while simultaneously recognizing the unique functions at different kennels.”“Besides being bad regulations, there are fundamental problems with the process,” Kline said, agreeing that representatives from the sporting dog community and other interest groups should have been consulted for input prior to the introduction of the regulations.As the owner of a sporting dog, Michael Gontar, Jim Thorpe, is also opposed to the new regulations.Gontar purchased his dog, a Clumber spaniel, from a private breeder in Pennsylvania.Although she only turns out a few dogs every few years, the breeder would be required to follow the proposed regulations, Gontar said. That would mean she’d have to construct runways on the acreage where she previously let the dogs run freely, and retain reams of paperwork about her dogs for three years.A member of the Pennsylvania Trappers’ Association, Gontar believes that the proposed regulations are too strict. He’s also convinced that the Department of Agriculture doesn’t want to hear from sportsmen who see the proposal as a threat to hunting.Ruth recalled a Dog Law Advisory Board hearing held in July in Malvern during which Department of Agriculture Deputy Secretary Jessie Smith stopped testimony from the USSA and Holly Hill Beagles representatives.Because the changes are not proposed legislation – and can be likened to rewritten regulations – no votes are needed by either the state House or Senate.A number of organizations are opposed to the changes and include the American Kennel Club, American Canine Association, Cabela’s Inc., National Animal Interest Alliance, Pennsylvania Farm Bureau and the Pennsylvania Federation of Dog Clubs, which believes the regulations will affect the Eukanuba Dog Show in Philadelphia. Also opposed are dog clubs, including the American Brittany Club, Carlisle Beagle Club, Jack Russell Terrier Clubs of America and the American Plott Hound Association, and several animal rescue organizations.Ruth, who visited Hazleton from the USSA headquarters in Ohio, said national groups are watching with interest what is unfurling in Pennsylvania. If the proposed changes are accepted, she said, other states might follow suit.Throughout the week, Ruth is scheduled to meet with sportsmen’s groups across the state to encourage members to contact their lawmakers and demand that the dog-care regulations be withdrawn.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

PA- HB to ban tethering dogs (except on farms)

Pa. measure would limit dog tethering
The House bill would ban tying up dogs overnight, except on farms.
By Amy Worden
Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG - When the Pennsylvania SPCA picked up the 4-year-old chow chow last month, he had collapsed from starvation and dehydration on a Philadelphia street. A rope collar, embedded in his neck, had sliced deep wounds that were infested with maggots.
"This was a case of long-term tethering," said Howard Nelson, executive director of the PSPCA, which is caring for the stray dog, now named Mulan. "Another few weeks and the rope would have pierced his esophagus, and he would have died."
Nelson and other animal-welfare advocates say passage of a pending bill banning 24/7 dog chaining statewide would prevent dogs from suffering a similar fate.
House Bill 1065, voted out of the Judiciary Committee by an overwhelming majority yesterday, is among a growing number of anti-tethering bills approved or under consideration in 19 states.
The Pennsylvania bill would forbid chaining between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. Violators could be cited for cruelty and, upon conviction, their dog could be seized. Tethering during the day and early evening would be allowed if shelter and food and clean water were provided. In a compromise with the powerful farm lobby, farmers would be exempt.
"It's been a long fight on a big issue," said the bill's sponsor, Rep. Mario M. Scavello (R., Monroe), who shared with the committee a story of a dog tied outside who froze to death in a snowstorm in his Pocono district two years ago.
Opponents said they were concerned that the law was overly restrictive.
"I'm concerned about the bill's unintended consequences," said Rep. Beverly Mackereth (R., York), one of four committee members who voted against the legislation. "You could lose your dog if you left him out for 15 minutes."
Scavello said the bill was not intended to seize dogs of responsible owners, but to protect dogs whose lives are threatened.
The American Kennel Club, which has opposed tethering bills elsewhere, has not taken a position on the Pennsylvania bill.
"Of course we are against inhumane tethering, but why do we need overly specific legislation?" asked Daisy Okas, the club's communications director. "We support enforcement of existing animal-cruelty laws."
Animal-welfare advocates say legislation dealing with round-the-clock tethering is needed because chained dogs are very often neglected, create a community nuisance with their barking, and can become dangerously aggressive.
Since 2003, at least 23 children nationwide have been killed and at least 170 injured when they were attacked by chained dogs, according to the Altoona-based anti-chaining advocacy group, Dogs Deserve Better.
"A large percentage of cruelty cases we see involve some form of tethering," Nelson said.
Fourteen states, including New Jersey, have considered tethering bills this year, compared with five last year. Of the 14, California, Maryland, Texas and Tennessee have passed them.
Anti-tethering ordinances approved by municipalities have also increased, though apparently none exist in Pennsylvania, according to the Humane Society of the United States, which has lobbied for the Pennsylvania bill.
Scavello said he was confident that the show of support in the committee meant the bill's chances of passage in the House were good.
Tom Andrews, a spokesman for House Majority Leader Bill DeWeese (D., Greene), wrote in an e-mail that DeWeese would "vet (no pun intended)" the bill in the next several weeks.
For now, Mulan, his thick coat shaved, is recovering in the PSPCA's veterinary hospital. "He's very sweet," Nelson said. "A few more weeks and he'll be ready for adoption."

Muzzling pit bulls, or politicians Mutts
Mutts, a blog by John Woestendiek of The Baltimore Sun
« 100 dog breeds morphed, with music
Main Muzzling pit bulls, or politicians?

Today, inspired by recent events in Baltimore County, I would like to propose some legislation. Whereas, politicians have repeatedly screwed things up, and aforementioned mistakes often have long-lasting negative effects on the rest of our lives, and;

Whereas, politicians have again and again been caught up in illegal, corrupt and illicit activities and affairs that reflect poorly on the rest of our species, and;

Whereas, while all humans are capable of inflicting harm, politicians are stronger and have more of a bite, leading to the infliction of greater damage;

Therefore, be it resolved that the following bit of "occupation- specific" legislation is hereby enacted, requiring (A) politicians to be kept in a wire mesh enclosure at all times, and;
(B) When not occupying said wire mesh enclosures, all politicians shall be muzzled while amongst the public to prevent the spread of lies, deception and empty promises, and;
(C) When inside their homes and/or offices, those premises must be clearly marked with signs that say "Beware of Politician," or "Vicious Politician Inside" and ...

OK, maybe that's going too far, but that's exactly what two Baltimore County Council members have done by proposing a bill that would require pit bulls -- for starters, anyway -- be muzzled in public and kept locked up in private.

The bill, which also calls for extra licensing fees, mandatory insurance and inspection of homes with pit bulls, is scheduled for a vote next month.

Not only is that cruelty to animals, it's racist.

Or at least breedist. Because a dog is, or contains amounts of, what we generally refer to as pit bull is no reason to single it out to a caged and muzzled life.

As anyone who has seen my movie (plug coming up), "Hey, Mister, What Kind of Dog is That?" knows, the percentage of various breeds that might be in a dog is mostly meaningless.

Both the city and county have seen some tragic incidents this year involving what have been described as pit bulls. But breed-specific legislation in neither a reasonable nor humane response to it. The answer is tracking down and arresting the Michael Vicks of the world is -- those that would instill and encourage vicious behavior in dogs for their own sick enjoyment.

Those are my thoughts, anyway. Yours' are welcome. Comment by clicking the button immediately below this entry. If we get a good sampling, we may even pass them on to Baltimore County.
Posted by John Woestendiek on September 28, 2007

PA- an amendment to include spay/neuter

SB 1101 By Senators BROWNE, LOGAN, PUNT, WASHINGTON, RAFFERTY and DINNIMAN. Read the whole thing

*(this is just the begining of this SB- go read the whole thing)*

1 Amending the act of December 7, 1982 (P.L.784, No.225),
2 entitled, as amended, "An act relating to dogs, regulating
3 the keeping of dogs; providing for the licensing of dogs and
4 kennels; providing for the protection of dogs and the
5 detention and destruction of dogs in certain cases;
6 regulating the sale and transportation of dogs; declaring
7 dogs to be personal property and the subject of theft;
8 providing for the abandonment of animals; providing for the
9 assessment of damages done to animals; providing for payment
10 of damages by the Commonwealth in certain cases and the
11 liability of the owner or keeper of dogs for such damages;
12 imposing powers and duties on certain State and local
13 officers and employees; providing penalties; and creating a
14 Dog Law Restricted Account," further providing for spaying or
15 neutering as condition for release of certain animals; and
16 repealing certain provisions relating to sterilization of
17 dogs and cats.

PA- Editorial in October 1 Harrisburg Patriot News

OFF TRACK Instead of focus on puppy mills, dog law revisions on wrong path
Monday, October 01, 2007
With much fanfare, Gov. Ed Rendell took on the state's "puppy mills." He brought in a new dog law advisory board last year, created a sort of state "dog czar," and had the Department of Agriculture propose tough new kennel regulations. Although we originally applauded those efforts to address Pennsylvania's dreadful reputation for indiscriminate mass breeding of dogs in sometimes unsavory conditions, we now take pause. The process has become mired in controversy, with nearly 50 reputable breeding and sporting groups raising concerns under the umbrella of the U.S. Sportmen's Alliance. These groups, which include the American Kennel Club and the Pennsylvania Federation of Dog Clubs, feel the new regulations are a "one size fits all" approach that fails to address the differences between kennel operations and specific breeds. More troubling is that representatives of these organizations say they've been shut out of process. John Gibble, president of the Northeast Beagle Gun Dog Federation who was appointed to the Dog Law Advisory Board last year, told The Patriot-News Editorial Board new regulations were mailed to board members last November, prior to their first meeting on Dec. 13. Three days later, they were posted in the Pennsylvania Bulletin. And he adds that his input since then has largely been ignored. Significantly, the critics are backed by the state's Independent Regulatory Review Commission, which last spring reported the proposals are too broadly applied and are "at odds with the recognition that not all kennels are alike." Regulations like standard crate sizes, the amount of exercise required and the surfaces exercise should be conducted on fail to recognize that the different breeds and size of dogs also have different space and exercise needs. T he Agriculture Department has estimated the costs of complying with these new regulations at between $5,000 and $20,000, a cost that will be much easier to bear for large commercial operations and not "hobby breeders," whose interests aren't profit-oriented but in carrying on a breed's history and characteristics. Members of the alliance contend existing laws are on the books to address puppy mills if there was adequate enforcement. They also suggest defining such operations in state law, and applying different regulations to different types of kennels. We continue to think that Gov. Rendell, a dog lover who has two golden retrievers he has taken in as rescues, is well-intentioned and on the right path in addressing Pennsylvania's reputation as "the puppy mill capital of the East." But those raising red flags are a cross-section of organizations and individuals across Pennsylvania who are experts in dog breeding through medically sound and humane methods. The governor should tell the Agriculture Department to go back to square one, revisit the proposed regulations in their entirety, and hold more public meetings in which everyone is satisfied they've had their say. After that, make any regulations part of a state law that requires legislative approval. To continue ramming these proposals through is going to further splinter interests that really have much more in common than they do differences, and possibly impose the heaviest financial and regulatory burdens on the wrong breeders.

PA- 2nd Draft of proposed changes to Dog Law not yet ready

2nd draft of dog law not yet ready
The first proposed revision yielded 16,000 public comments.
By Tom Venesky
Sports Reporter

The state Department of Agriculture is making a second revision to the proposed changes to the dog law regulations and the proposal should be released by the end of the year.
There will be a few changes from the first draft, according to Jessie Smith, the department’s special deputy secretary for dog law enforcement. Since the proposal yielded more than 16,000 public comments, it should take time before a document that is ready for a legislative vote.
Smith said the majority of the comments were positive.
“People said we need to do something about substandard commercial breeding operations in Pennsylvania,” she said.
Many hobby breeders and those who raise sporting dogs believed the revisions included them, which resulted in a wave of opposition from those groups.
Smith said there is no reason for the concern because the changes won’t affect groups that conduct field trials or dog shows.
The current law calls for anyone who possesses more than 26 dogs in one year to obtain a kennel license – those are the people who would be subject to the changes, Smith said.
“If you’re not licensed now, you won’t fall under the changes,” she said. “It’s very important that people understand this is not requiring someone who doesn’t have a kennel license now to get one.”
According to the Agriculture Department Web site, 48 Luzerne County establishments have either a boarding or kennel license.
Among the changes that Smith said are being considered for the upcoming second draft is a provision requiring that dogs be exercised for 20 minutes a day. The concern among those who raise sporting dogs is the provision did not allow for hunting or training time to fulfill the 20 minutes of exercise.
Smith said the intent of the provision was for dogs in a commercial breeding facility that can be permanently in a 2-by-3-foot enclosure.
“That’s pretty small,” she said. “And there’s no exercise required.”
Smith acknowledged that time spent hunting and training should count as exercise and the language will be changed to include such activity.
Other changes will be made to the draft to lessen the burden of increased record keeping, especially for small hobby breeders, and allow dogs to be exercised on grass.
In addition to writing a second draft, the department also has to complete a public-comment response document, which is a response to each of the 16,000 comments received. After a public hearing is held early next year, a third draft will be written, followed by a short public-comment period. Smith said they have until April 2009 to complete a fourth draft and submit it to the House and Senate agricultural committees and the Independent Regulatory Review Commission.
“We’re not trying to burden anyone, drive anyone out of business of stop anyone from hunting,” Smith said. “The idea behind this is to improve the health, safety and welfare of kenneled dogs.”
Tom Venesky, a Times Leader staff writer, may be reached at 829-7230.

PA- Gov. moving ahead with new regulations for dog breeders
Dog breeder rules rewritten
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
By John Hayes, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Citing the concerns of hunters and dog hobbyists, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture has altered an early draft of regulations for large-scale commercial dog breeders, a department spokeswoman said.
The regulations are being revised at the behest of Gov. Ed Rendell to address concerns about dog breeding companies where hundreds of puppies are bred for sale.
An early draft of the proposed revisions outraged kennel club members, dog show organizers and hunters who raise sporting dogs. They feared the new regulations would require them to spend tens of thousands of dollars on kennel upgrades, and subject them to licensing fees and steep fines for violations.
"It's clear these regulations are directed at 'puppy mills,' large scale abusive commercial breeding facilities," said Evan Heusinkveld, a lobbyist with the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance of Columbus, Ohio. "But the way it's written ... any group that houses 26 dogs in a year would be subject to these rules and would have to have $100,000 worth of upgrades. It puts hunting clubs and dog shows out of business."
The Sportsmen's Alliance has encouraged Pennsylvania hunters, gun clubs and dog raising groups to oppose the new regulations.
Jessie Smith, deputy secretary for dog law enforcement for the Department of Agriculture, said the new rules won't affect them.
"We've spent a lot of time saying this is not aimed at negatively impacting people who keep sporting dog kennels," she said. "Field trials, dog shows, training, grooming, camping ... none of that is covered by kennel regulations."
Mr. Heusinkveld cited several parts of the proposed "Dog Law Enforcement" regulation that he says could be interpreted to impact hunters, groomers and other groups that currently are not required to purchase kennel licenses.
Among them is an article dictating penalties that would apply to "any establishment that keeps, harbors, boards, shelters, sells, gives away or in any way transfers the cumulative total of 26 or more dogs in any one calendar year."
"That could be interpreted as field trials at gun clubs, dog shows, even friends who get together and run their dogs, as long as there were 26 dogs in a year," Mr. Heusinkveld said.
A public forum on the regulation revisions led to 16,000 comments -- a Department of Agriculture record.
The department is required to respond to each one, Ms. Smith said, which has delayed the publication of a second draft that includes new language intended to address dog owners' concerns.
"We're revising the regulations," she said. "We may go as far as to put in a sentence that says this isn't intended to apply to field trials, boarding, grooming."
Ms. Smith said a second draft containing the revisions will be published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin by the end of the year and another public forum will be held in early 2008.
Ultimately, she said, three versions of the Dog Law regulations will have been drafted before the regulatory change is considered by agricultural committees of the state House and Senate.

First published on September 25, 2007 at 12:00 am
John Hayes can be reached at or 412-263-1991.