The state legislature in Minnesota is considering a bill to license pet breeders and set up a system of inspections. Both requirements are needed everywhere – to help shut down puppy mills.
The licenses would cost breeders $10 per animal, up to a cap of $250 per year. And MPR News reports the inspections would be conducted by the Minnesota Board of Animal Health. The article notes licenses would be required for breeders with “10 or more breeding animals that produce more than five litters a year.”
The Minnesota Pet Breeders Association and the Minnesota Veterinary Medical Association are supporting an alternate bill which would have inspections conducted by veterinarians. My concern here is that the breeder might use a veterinarian they have a connection with.
But one of the key sentences in the article relate to Rep. Tim Faust -
He does not think it’s a conflict of interest for breeders to select and pay the vets who inspect them.
Faust clearly does not understand – or does not want to understand – how this certainly can lead to a conflict of interest. He doesn’t just ignore the obvious, he flips the obvious on its head.
Faust also told the reporter he felt the bill proposing licensing and inspections penalize good breeders. I’ve heard this excuse more times than I care to count. When someone makes this statement it can be translated to say – good breeders have standards below very basic standards of care. How can that be? Are quality breeders forcing their dogs to live in cages 24/7? Are good breeders failing to offer their dogs veterinary care? Are good breeders not keeping the animals in clean enclosures? Are good breeders not allowing their dogs time for exercise?
Quality breeders should already maintain the minimum standards in every proposed piece of legislation I’ve read over the last many, many years. Anyone not providing minimum standards of care for their breeding animals should be shut down. It’s the point of having breeding regulations.
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