Saturday, June 13, 2009

Dogs Outlawed In Los Angeles...

AKC Disqualification Shows Entire Nation The Danger of

Compromise, Apathy Or Agreeing To Biased Task Forces

by MARGO MILDE AND JOHN YATES American sporting Dog Alliance

This report is archived at

LOS ANGELES, CA – It will be next to impossible to own a sexually intact registered dog or cat within the City of Los Angeles, if City Council approves a series of recommendations by the Spay/Neuter Advisory Committee in a March 30, 2009, report. These recommendations have been sent to Los Angeles City Council and to Mayor Antonio R. Villaraigosa in final form, the American Sporting Dog Alliance has documented. Action on the recommendations could happen at any time.

It already is illegal in Los Angeles to possess a sexually intact dog that is registered with the Field Dog Stud Book (FDSB), and the committee’s recommendations would cancel out current exemptions for approved show, field trial, performance and breeding dogs registered with the American Kennel Club (AKC), and also rare breed and smaller registries. The recommendations also may affect dogs registered with the United Kennel Club (UKC), and cats registered with the three top feline registries. Beginning this year, the ordinance has required all dogs and cats that did not qualify for an intact exemption to be spayed or neutered at the medically unsafe age of four months.

Now, however, it is clear that even these few exemptions are intended to be phased out, if recommendations from the committee are approved by the City Council. The committee’s recommendations also contain a series of “Catch 22’s” that would make it virtually impossible for the owner of an intact dog to maintain an exemption for competition, field trials and shows, even if the registry itself maintains its exemption, documents show.

The unfolding situation in Los Angeles gives dramatic and clear proof that the ultimate goal of all animal rights-inspired legislation is a step toward the elimination of animal ownership in America. Each law, ordinance and regulation is merely the first step toward a tightening of the noose in this incremental approach to making America a nation without dogs, cats and other domesticated animals. Each step is designed to lead to another, until no more animals are left.

For dog owners, it means that any compromise with animal rights activists is illogical, unwise and totally illusory. Dog owners who agree to negotiate, participate on task forces or committees that are stacked against them, compromise, cut deals, remain apathetic, or fail to fight hard for their rights in the political arena, are slitting their own throats. The only alternative is to fight back courageously against all animal rights legislation, and refuse to quit, surrender or compromise.

That lesson applies equally to all Americans who own dogs or cats, and has immediate meaning to Illinois, which has set up a task force to study new dog laws, and Maine and Santa Barbara, CA, which are now in the process of having the results rammed down their throats by task forces that were designed to have strong animal rights biases.

The Los Angeles Committee also provides a clear lesson to dog owners about how task forces and committees can be taken over by nonresident animal rights extremists, who now are incorporating these committees into their nationwide strategy. The American Sporting Dog Alliance first uncovered this strategy in the City of Dallas, TX, which passed a repressive spay/neuter mandate last year based on the recommendations of a committee with official status that pointedly excluded anyone who was not an animal rights activist.

The Los Angeles Committee includes at least one person who does not live in the city: noted animal rights extremist Judie Mancuso of Laguna Beach, CA. Mancuso was a major force behind last year’s failed effort to enact statewide mandatory spay/neuter legislation, and is leading efforts for legislation this year. Mancuso also works on mandatory sterilization issues nationwide, and recently testified in Chicago, where she claimed that these ordinances do not affect the availability of purebred dogs. The Los Angeles proposals contradict and discredit Mancuso’s statements in Chicago and elsewhere, and show clearly that her real goal is to eliminate purebred dogs.

Here are the Los Angeles Spay/Neuter Committee report’s highlights pertaining to owning intact purebred dogs.

Almost all of America’s dog and cat registries would be removed from the list of approved registries, because they do not have official policies to protect the health and soundness of dogs eligible for registration and used in breeding programs, as would be required by the new recommendations.

We see this requirement as a “Catch 22” that is impossible to fulfill, because the science of canine genetics is in its infancy and does not allow many conditions to be predicted accurately (and thus prevented), and the Los Angeles ordinance is essentially requiring registries to be liable (including financially liable) for the results of matings over which they have no real control. Private breeders of high quality dogs also would object to a distant registry taking control of their breeding decisions, if for no other reason than the fact that registry officials would have no first-hand knowledge of the dogs involved, their progeny or their ancestors.

Dogs registered by the American Kennel Club (AKC), which is the nation’s largest registry, could not be kept sexually intact or bred in Los Angeles if these recommendations are adopted. This also would apply to dogs registered through the American Dog Breeders Association (American pit bull terriers), the Continental Kennel Club, the American Rare Breed Association, the Australian Shepherd Club of America and the Dog Registry of America, and possibly cats registered by the three major feline registries.

The status of UKC-registered dogs could not be determined from the report. The UKC already has an extensive list of breeding policies, but they are essentially recommendations to breeders and most are not mandatory. Nor is it known if the UKC would be willing to assume liability for the actions of breeders.

Field Dog Stud Book, which is America’s oldest registry and the premiere registry for pointers and setters bred for hunting and field trials, is not included in the current list of approved registries and also could not possibly meet the requirements of the committee report. It is currently illegal to own a sexually intact FDSB-registered dog, or breed it, in the City of Los Angeles.

To obtain a breeding permit, the report recommends requiring that a dog must be temperament tested, have Orthopedic Foundation of America certification for hip dysplasia, meet other unspecified “health requirements,” and have earned or be earning a title in competition through an approved registry (of which there would be none). We regard all of these as cynical “Catch 22s.”

Temperament testing would be done by the animal control agency, which lacks the expertise to evaluate dogs of most breeds and could not do a fair evaluation in the chaotic environment of an animal control facility. Thus, many good dogs would be set up to fail.

OFA hip certification cannot be obtained until a dog is two years old and the Los Angeles ordinance requires dogs to be spayed at age four months (long before they would be bred, entered in serious competition or could be certified by OFA), and animal control personnel do not have the knowledge or experience to evaluate genetic health problems or the ways to reduce or eliminate them.

The report also recommends that all dogs be entered into a show or competition at least annually to qualify for an exemption (the current requirement is one show every two years). However, this fails to account for the reality that many dogs are kept for evaluation for a year or two before they are entered in competition or sent to a professional trainer, an injury or illness can hold a dog out of competition for lengthy periods, and many outstanding champions are retired from competition early to use for breeding in order to pass on their outstanding genetics to future generations. These dogs would have to be sterilized, under the recommendation.

The current ordinance exempts a dog that is being trained for competition, or as a guide, service or military dog. However, the committee report recommends eliminating this exemption if the dog’s trainer is not an officially licensed business in the City of Los Angeles, as well as stating that dog trainers should meet certain unspecified "qualifications" to be licensed.

The dog world is not local. Many serious breeders are themselves highly competent and qualified trainers, and many send their dogs to trainers who are located in other parts of the state or nation. These trainers could not qualify for a Los Angeles business license for the simple reason that they do not live in the city (and possibly not even in the state), and the breeders could not qualify for a business license because they are hobbyists who are not in the business of training dogs for the public.

Moreover, no one in the animal control department is even remotely qualified to pass judgment on the ability or qualifications of a professional trainer.

It is doubtful if any professional trainers of field trial or hunting dogs live within the city, as there would not be enough suitable grounds nearby, and regulations and taxation would be prohibitive in an urban environment.

Requirements to maintain a sexually intact dog also would be tightened generally, including mandating spay/neuter for a second offense of leash laws or a second impoundment by animal control, shortening time limits for compliance, denying permits to dog owners to whom even one warning had been issued, and raising prices of intact and breeding permits (current permits cost $100 per animal per year, and allow the holder only one litter per year per each female animal for which a permit has been obtained).

The Los Angeles Committee report to City Council is contained in a 91-page (pdf file) report that can be viewed at . See pdf pages 68-through-74. Look for Recommendation Twelve. This report was located and researched by ASDA advisor and researcher Margo Milde of Glenview, IL.

The current ordinance can be viewed at .

The American Sporting Dog Alliance urges all Los Angeles dog owners to oppose this report to City Council.

We also ask dog owners everywhere in America to learn from what is happening in Los Angeles and spurn the idea of task forces, negotiations with animal rights activists, or agreeing to compromises.

Failing to fight back courageously is the first step in participating in the destruction of the dogs that you love, and your own freedom and basic rights as an American.

We also challenge the purebred dog and cat registries themselves, but especially the American Kennel Club (AKC), the largest purebred dog registry in the United States, to vigorously oppose the Los Angeles committee's recommendations. We also urge these registries to make adverse legislation involving any facet of dog and cat ownership and breeding their utmost priority. We especially ask the AKC to clearly communicate to its affiliated and member clubs the dangers of seeking purebred or show exemptions in any proposed legislation involving dog ownership or breeding, since, as these Los Angeles committee's recommendations illustrate, such legal exemptions are only a sham, to be all too easily removed by the Animal Rights zealots who seek the extinction of all purebred breeds of dogs.

The American Sporting Dog Alliance represents owners, breeders and professionals who work with breeds of dogs that are used for hunting. We also welcome people who work with other breeds, as legislative issues affect all of us. We are a grassroots movement working to protect the rights of dog owners, and to assure that the traditional relationships between dogs and humans maintains its rightful place in American society and life. The American Sporting Dog Alliance also needs your help so that we can continue to work to protect the rights of dog owners. Your membership, participation and support are truly essential to the success of our mission. We are funded solely by your donations in order to maintain strict independence.

Please visit us on the web at . Our email is .


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