RESPONSIBLE DOG OWNERS OF THE WESTERN STATESP.O. Box 1406  Newport, WA 99156Web Site E-mail US rdows@povn.comBlog  E-mail List Cherie Graves, Chairwoman, WA, (509) 447-2821Judy Schreiber-Dwornick, Assistant to the Chair, Director at Large, rdowsdirectoratlarge@gmail.comHermine Stover, Secretary, Press Liaison, CA, hermine@endangeredspecies.comMary Schaeffer, Finance Director, finedogs@hotmail.comCalifornia Director, Jan Dykema bestuvall@sbcglobal.netIllinois Director, Elizabeth Pensgard bpensgard@yahoo.comIndiana Director, Charles Coffman candkcoffman@comcast.netIowa Director, Leisa Boysen rdows_iowa@yahoo.comMississippi Director, Dan Crutchfield farmer1@telepak.netNevada Director, Ken Sondej 4winds@viawest.netOhio Director, Tiffany Skotnicky ohdirrdows@yahoo.comOklahoma Director, Jade Harris aadrlegislation@yahoo.comTennessee Director, Gina Cotton ginacotton@msn.comTexas Director, Alvin Crow  OPPOSITION STATEMENT TO WA SB 6132 – 2007-08  Regulating the keeping of exotic animals  Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States was formed October 15, 1989 to protect the rights, and interests of dog owners.  Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States is opposed to SB 6132 Sponsored by Senator Marilyn Rasmussen, Second Legislative District,  as it is a violation of the Constitution of the United States of America and of  the Constitution of Washington State. Amendment I
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. Washington State’s Christian, and Jewish residents believe that God created animals for human beings to own. SB 6132 violates the religious rights of the people of Washington.24 And said, ‘Let the earth bring forth living creatures of every kind: cattle and creeping things and wild animals of the earth of every kind.’ And it was so. 25God made the wild animals of the earth of every kind, and the cattle of every kind, and everything that creeps upon the ground of every kind. And God saw that it was good. 26 Then God said, ‘Let us make humankind* in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth,* and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.’
27So God created humankind* in his image,
   in the image of God he created them;*
   male and female he created them.
28God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.’ 29God said, ‘See, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food. 30And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.’ And it was so. 31God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. SB 6132 violates the property rights of the people of Washington as granted under both the U.S. Constitution and the Washington State Constitution. Amendment IV
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. Animals are the most ancient property of human beings. It is only with the advent of the animal rights movement that was created in Nazi Germany has there been any question as to the rights of human beings to own animals. Banning, any animal sets the precedent to ban all animals.  The United States Constitution makes no mention of animals, as our founders, in their wisdom, recognized that animals were, are, and have always been the rightful property of human beings. Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States respectfully requests the Washington State Legislature to kill SB1632. 


Legislative Report 01-16-08

January 17, 2008

Legislative Report 01-16-08Authored by: Ken Sondej & Linda D. WitouskiKen Sondej – 4winds@viawest.netAmerican Kennel Club Legislative Liaison – Silver State Kennel Club Legislative Liaison – National Pet PressLegislative Liaison – Nevada Dog Fanciers Assc. Director Government Affairs and Legislative Advisor – Adopt A Rescue PetNevada Director – Responsible Dog Owners Western States (RDOWS)Advisor – Indiana Animal Owners AllianceAdvisor  to Clubs and groups in Southern Nevada, Arizona, CaliforniaLinda Witouski – dropfred13@aol.comAmerican Kennel Club JudgeAmerican Kennel Club Delegate – Myrtle Beach Kennel Club – SCAmerican Kennel Club Legislative Liaison – South Carolina & PennsylvaniaLegislative Liaison/Staff Writer – National Pet Press/TDPLegislative Chair/BOD – Myrtle Beach Kennel ClubLegislative Chair – Yankee Miniature Pinscher ClubLegislative Chair – Miniature Pinscher Club of America, Inc.Member: NAIA, MOF, ERPT, DSJA, DJAA, MBKC, YMPC, MPCA Handy TOLLFREE NUMBERS – Capitol Switchboard
Here are some toll-free numbers for the Capitol Switchboard:
FEDERALU.S. Senate passes Farm Bill with important Companion Animal Provision  – Last Chance for Animals (AR group)  applauds Senate for making pet theft a Federal Issue.Toledo OH –  Tellings appeal to the United States Supreme Court was filed 12-21-07 – IN ALPHABETICAL ORDERALABAMAAthens – repeals pet license ordinance.  City officials said the registration was costing the city more money than it was bringing in and that it was a duplication of services with a state health law that requires dogs to be vaccinated for rabies.  12/17/07Colbert County – County’s animal control director is asking the county’s larger municipalities to consider an ordinance that would outlaw chaining dogs. Government officials in Muscle Shoals, Sheffield and Tuscumbia said they are aware of the request from county Animal Control Director Tommy Morson, but so far none of the councils has adopted the proposed ordinance.  When he presented the proposal to Sheffield council members, Morson said chaining dogs to a stake or post makes the animals more territorial and aggressive.  In addition to prohibiting tethering or chaining of dogs to stationary objects, the ordinance would mandate that dog pens must provide 100 square feet of space for each dog over 3 months old.  If dogs are confined within a fenced-in yard, the area must have sufficient space for exercise based on a dimension of 100 square feet per dog. Fences must be constructed of chain link or similar material and be tall enough to prevent the dog from escaping and each animal must have his own dog house.Dothan – new ordinance gives AC officers right of entry for the purpose to impound animal(s) and issue citations for violations (against Alabama State Law), defines regulations for “dangerous”, “vicious” and nuisance (any animal at large not spay or neutered)” dogs, prohibits urination on private property or defecate on public property, liability for damage caused by animal(s) and care of livestock.   text available upon request.ARKANSASCrossett – extended discussion involving the city’s existing animal ordinance as compared to a recommendation prepared by a committee working on the definition of a vicious dog, the council moved that City Attorney James Hamilton amend the existingordinance and prepare the committee’s suggestion in ordinance form for further discussion and review by the council.North Little Rock – new ordinance, Little Rock residents still will be allowed to have pit bulls, and new residents can move with their dogs into the city but will have to register them with Animal Services, pose for a photograph with the dog, sterilize the animal and pay an additional fee to have a dangerous breed permit.  The ordinance also limits owners to two dogs per household, would apply to American pit bull terriers, Staffordshire terriers, American Staffordshire terriers and any mix of those breeds. Text is available upon requestNOTE: City of Little Rock was added to a lawsuit filed by Responsible Owners of Arkansas Dogs (ROADS) regarding breed selective legislation and banning of certain breedsCALIFORNIACity of Sacramento –  importing adoptable dogs to meet the demand at the shelters and building a new $25 million shelter where, evidently, they are planning to eventually be the only place in town to “buy” a pet.Kern County – During the months of May and June 2007, ten public workshops were conducted throughout Kern County to introduce possible Animal Ordinance amendments. As a result of public input received during those workshops, staff indicated that a number of changes would be included in further discussion with the Animal Control Commission   Commission will further discuss this matter at its Wednesday, January 16, 2008 meeting, 6:00 p.m. at the Public Services Building, 2700 M Street, Bakersfield.  It is possible that a formal recommendation on this proposal may be acted upon at the February 20, 2007 Commission meeting.COLORADOCarbondale – Town Council agreed Tuesday (12/11/07) after reviewing a draft of the new ordinance aimed at addressing aggressive animals, that it requires tweaking.   A revised version will come back to town trustees with further clarification of the penalty for neglecting a dog and a refined definition of “vicious.”  Other issues- ­ mandatory leash laws and limiting the number of dogs a single owner can have­ were also discussed.  Board members agreed the revised ordinance should include rewards for responsible owners.Edgewood – seeks to join surrounding communities in limiting the number of animals in a home.  Limits are based on the number of lots you are on, as opposed to the number of acres.  A 100-acre lot has the same limits as a person on a 1-acre lot.Parachute – ordinance that would have banned pit bulls, unless their owners followed several strict requirements, died after two motions to approve it failed for lack of seconds. One motion would have added other dog breeds, such as Dobermans and Rottweilers, to the ban.  DEAD  12/13/07Parachute – Town Council approves vicious-pet ordinance regaring dangerous and potentially dangerous dogs.  The ordinance would apply to all breeds of dogs and any kinds of pets.  A municipal judge would determine whether an animal is potentially dangerous after a hearing.  A dog designated as potentially dangerous would have to be spayed or neutered and kept indoors or in a secure pen to prevent it from escaping, according to the ordinance. A dog classified as dangerous, meaning it had violated the ordinance after being deemed potentially dangerous, would be humanely euthanized.  If the dog were taken off its owner’s property, it must wear a leash no longer than 4 feet.  The owner would also have to display a sign on his or her property to alert people that a dangerous animal was present, and obtain a special license and tag from the town. Violators of those conditions would be subject to a municipal fine.The ordinance will take effect once the Town Council gives it final approval at its next meeting.FLORIDALake Mary – City is discussing a change in the pet limit lawsMiami-Dade County – County Commission will be holding a public hearing at 9:30am on Tuesday, 12/18, to discuss a variety of changes to the animal control ordinance including limiting the number of pets a resident may own, implementing hobby breeder licensing, requiring mandatory microchipping for dog breeders and restricting rescue organizations. Commissioners voted in a non-public hearing to defer the Chapter 5 re-write in Miami-Dade   12/18/07Palm Beach – County commissioners are discussing proposed revisions to animal control ordinance.  The majority of people agreed to a non mandatory spay/neuter program offered through vet vouchers in the entire County. (health issues and other concerns not directly related to being a breeder were cited) This would remove the breeder “tax” from the legislature altogether and make it completely voluntary. The revisions were a result of the 6 MONTH waiting list to get low cost spay/neuter from Palm Beach Animal Care and Control. UPDATE: Palm Beach County officials have taken the bite out of a controversial plan intended to force residents to spay and neuter their pets. Newest version of the rules would allow all pet owners to opt out of the requirement by paying a $75 fee. Pet owners who buy the unaltered license also would be required to certify in writing that the dog or cat will not be bred. Breeders still would be required pay for the permit – $300 a year, but the county would waive the fee in many cases.GEORGIAAthens-Clarke County – Commission voted to ban tethering animals to object. The new law requires all dogs and other animals to be housed in an enclosure, such as a fenced-in area with a doghouse,
and no longer allows owners to chain or tether their pets to inanimate objects like trees.
The law came in response to complaints from animal-rights activists and Athens-Clarke Animal Control officers. Commissioners Doug Lowry, George Maxwell and Harry Sims opposed it.
(PASSED)ILLINOISSpringfield – new law went into effect Tuesday (01/01/08) to protect pets and animals from domestic violence.  Under the new law, Illinois judges can include animals in orders of protection, just as they would a human being. The bill was passed unanimously in May 2007.Farmington – City Council heard a proposed ordinance for the first time Monday (12/17/07) that would make pit bulls a dying breed in the city.  The ordinance states that no ‘new’ pit bulls can be brought into the city and that current pit bull owners will have to apply for a special license within 60 days of the ordinance. The ordinance was read for the first time Monday and will be presented for a full vote in early 2008. The license would require proof of ownership of the pit bull, a copy of health and immunization records, a certificate of insurance for injury or damages by the dog for at least $500,000 and two photographs of the dog.  The license will cost $100.  Farmington is not a “home rule” city.  The council will vote on the ordinance at an upcoming meeting.  UPDATE: Proposed ordinance banning pit bulls in the city was not on January 7 meeting agenda.  “There has been indication of potential litigation by various organizations, and the cost of a legal defense for this type of lawsuit would not be in the best interest of the citizens of Farmington,” City Administrator Roger Woodcock said in a news release Thursday 12/20/07.KANSASBeloit – BSL was supposedly repealed however, the city council posted a new breed ban via a newspaper posting behind the people’s backs  (no further info provided)Humboldt – City Council members approved a series of sweeping new animal control ordinances that ban ownership of pit bull terriers and rottweilers within city limits.  Only those who had properly registered those types of dogs with the city by Dec. 31 will be allowed to keep the animals and restricts ownership of pit bulls and rottweilers, which the city considers “inherently dangerous” and “a significant threat to the public’s health, safety and welfare.”  Even those who have previously registered their dogs face a litany of restrictions, including: The dogs mustt be confined indoors or in a secure pen. Dogs are allowed outside those containnment areas only if they are restrained by a leash and muzzle. Owners must maiintain at least $50,000 in liability insurance for bodily injury or death and have sufficient “beware of dog” signage. Dogs must be pphotographed, and cannot be sold or have their ownership transferred to any other person within the city. Any offspring born to a registered pit bull or rottweiler must be removed from the city within six weeks of birth. Violators are subject to Humbooldt Municipal Court fines of up to $1,000 and a 30-day jail sentence. Passed 01/07/08Hutchinson – city has added some teeth and a little bit of bite to its updated animal control ordinances – specifically the section on dog licensing fees.  City found a good compromise in drafting the new ordinance. It allows pet owners to pay a higher fee for choosing not to spay or neuter their pets while offering a financial incentive to the owners of pets who do so.   Effective Jan. 1.Winfield – new ordinance requiring the licensing of animals whch require proof of rabies immunization.  Required to either wear the registration tag, or in lieu of that, the owner may provide proof that the animal has been injected with an under-the-skin microchip ID. The number of the chip must be provided at registration time.   Effective 01/01/08Winfield – new ordinance regarding dog pens will take effect on July 1. The ordinance establishing the law reads as follows: “All dogs are to be confined to the owner’s property and not allowed to run free. Confinement can be met by adequately fenced yard, and in situations where the yard is not fenced, the owner shall confine the dog to the home or an adequate outside enclosure. Such enclosure shall be constructed of chain link or other suitable materials with all four sides enclosed. The enclosure shall be of sufficient height to prevent the dog from escaping from the enclosure. The top of the enclosure shall be covered with materials to provide the dog with shade and protection from the elements. The enclosure shall be adequate square footage to provide adequate exercise for the size of the dog confined.”   Effective 07/01/08Winfield – new ordinance restricting the tethering of dogs within the City of Winfield will also take effect on July 1. The ordinance reads as follows:  “It shall be unlawful to keep a dog tethered in place for more than one (1) hour at a time. After a break of not less than three (3) hours off the tether, a dog may be tethered again for one (1) hour. A dog may not be tethered more than three (3) hours in any twenty-four (24) hour period.”   Effective 07/01/08 KENTUCKYFrankfort – Pam Rogers of the Kentucky Humane Society commented that come the first of the year they will in fact be pushing for forfeiture bonds on any animals taken.  Irregardless of events, the KHS seems to believe that ‘guilty’ will be the only option.Louisville – After poring over significant testimony, highlighted by a strong consensus that unaltered dogs are not necessarily more aggressive than altered dogs, the subcommittee, in consultation with Metro Animal Services Director Gilles Meloche, agreed on a number of changes.  Among key changes: the revised ordinance still refers to dangerous and potentially dangerous dogs, but removes unaltered dogs from that category. It would allow the MAS director to impose fines on a sliding scale based on income; currently fines are fixed. It would remove restrictions on leash length for all but dangerous or potentially dangerous dogs, which would be limited to four-foot leashes, and it removes the word “permit” from the ordinance. Downard said that was an important change because permit, unlike the word license, implies that people don’t actually own their dogs.  The changes would also become less stringent on people whose licensed dogs get loose; currently those dogs are impounded, but under the proposed changes, the dogs would be returned on the first incident, followed by possible fines for repeat violations.  Changes passed committee 12/19/07.  Two lawsuits are still pending.LouisvilleUPDATE:  Progress in Louisville. Due to behind-the-scenes work by some of LKC’s most dedicated  members, the animal ordinance was changed. The changes, though they do not solve all the problems with the ordinance, do improve it vastly. For example: Unaltered dogs are no longer automatically “at risk.” Permits for unaltered dogs have been removed; now all dogs are licensed. Invisible fences are legal for unaltered dogs, and dogs may not be impounded for not having a license on the first offense.  The LKC’s lawsuit against the city is still moving forward, and their top-rated constitutional attorney believes they have a very good chance of winning. This will set a precedent that can be used to dissuade other cities from passing restrictive laws as in the Louisville 2006 disaster.Warren County – citizens’ group has been working for more than a year on a countywide animal control ordinance plans to present its work to Warren Fiscal Court in February.  Amending the standards enumerated then included requirements for regular food and water, adequate shelter, shade and living space, and regular veterinary care.  The draft ordinance doesn’t limit the number of animals that anyone can own, however, should someone have a large number of animals (no number mentioned) capable of breeding, they would need a $100 kennel license and an inspection.  Enforcement of the proposed ordinance would be driven by complaintsLOUISIANAKinder – Police Chief Gary Pelican has asked the town council to consider a ban on pit pullsMAINEAugusta – LD2010 (HP1394) LR 2754 – “An Act To Ensure Ethical and Humane Dog Breeding in the State” – bill seeks to enact measures designed to address the inhumane breeding standards of so-called “puppy mills” in the State. This bill would outlaw the most egregious dog breeding practices and would establish a Maine humane dog breeding standard.  No action in Senate   text available upon requestMICHIGANLansing – lawmakers recently passed legislation that will significantly strengthen penalties for the most severe cases of animal neglect. The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) released a statement praising this action. The new law, which will go into effect on April 1, will increase penalties based on the number of animals neglected and the accused’s conviction record. For example, someone who is charged with animal cruelty in the neglect of between four and nine animals who has a previous conviction for the charge will face up to two years in prison. Under the new law, those who are charged with abusing 10 or more animals, or who have more than two prior animal cruelty convictions, could face up to four years in prison.Hillsdale – updated animal control ordinance is in the works and the public could see a draft as early as next month.  Outdated in terms of fee structures, policies and practices, statutory changes and multiple issues involving the sheriff’s department’s responsibility for picking up and housing stray dogs.  The proposed ordinance language continues to undergo revisions and corrections.  Possible first reading at first meeting Jan. 8, with a public hearing Jan. 22.Van Buren Township – new pet ordinance draft will be presented to the Township Safety Committee to change their pet ordinance that will include how many pets a household can have and a possible breed ban.  When the proposed pet ordinance was originally discussed last October (at a Planning Commission meeting) a pit bull rescue group was specifically mentioned at the meeting, due to a complaint by a neighbor. At that time, township representatives claimed that this was NOT a breed-specific issue, and that they were not looking to add any breed-specific language to the new pet ordinance. Coincidentally, what was NOT brought up at this meeting – was that the newly proposed pet limit would prevent a local pit bull rescuer from being allowed to obtain a kennel license – simply because the rescuer’s property is located within 100 yards of a school, and also located next to a bus stop.MINNESOTASt. Paul – proposed legislation by Rep. John Lesch, DFL-St. Paul, intends to outlaw five dog breeds from the state – Pit Bulls, Akitas, Rottweilers, Chow Chows, and wolf hybridsMinneapolis – proposal to expand the definition of dangerous or potentially dangerous animals and to add restrictions on owners of such animals is headed to the City Council for a vote. Although most restrictions mention animals generally, it’s aimed mainly at dogs. The amended proposal still makes it harder for some felons to keep a dog that weighs more than 20 pounds or one that’s considered dangerous if mistreated. But an amendment limited that to people convicted of violent felonies within the previous 10 years. An unlicensed dog could be seized in some circumstances.  Still remaining to be worked out before an expected Jan. 18 council vote is whether a dog is dangerous merely if the person keeping it has items or drugs intended to be used to train the animal for dogfightingProctor – proposed ordinance to limit the number of dogs (3).  A “kennel license” would be required for more than six (6) dogs.   text available upon requestMISSOURIIndependence – group of residents are pushing for a ban on pit bullsPalmyra – City Council approved beefing up the city’s vicious dog ordinance and will require is that any vicious dogs within the city limits as of Dec. 20 be registered with the Palmyra Police Department.  That registration must include accurate color photographs and must be done by Jan. 31.  The other part of the ordinance bans any more vicious dogs from being brought into the city limits. Any puppies born to the animals grandfathered in must be moved out within eight weeks of birth.  Ordinance defines a vicious dog as one that “without provocation” has bitten or attempted to bite someone, or one that has placed an individual in fear of injury or killed another domestic animal.  Passed 12/18/07NEBRASKASouth Sioux City – council members passed the second reading of an ordinance that would “put a leash” on dangerous dogs in their town.  If the ordinance passes a third, and final, reading, the new ordinance would require owners of dangerous dogs to muzzle their pets in public.    Those owners would also have to pay a $65 registration fee, put up warning signs on their property, and obtain $250,000 in liability insurance. Council members made one important change. They amended a section, which previously included two classifications… potentially dangerous dogs, and dangerous dogs. The only dog automatically classified as “dangerous” were pit bulls. Only those owners would have been required to obtain the $250,000 in insurance.  Council voted to remove the “dangerous dogs” classification. Now, “dangerous dogs” aren’t separated by breed, but by action.  A “dangerous dog” is defined as one that has bitten or attacked someone, has severely injured or killed another domestic animal, or has been trained for dog fighting.NEVADALyon County – proposed ordinance amendment prohibits acts regarding animal cruelty – ordinance of the code to prohibit certain acts and conditions related to animals.  Proposed the amended ordinance, which adds five paragraphs regarding treatment of animals to Title 7, Chapter 1 (Animals and Animal Services), subchapter 5 (prohibited acts and conditions).  Paragraphs (M-Q) deal with fighting of animals (instigated or baited), injury and overwork, enclosures and restraintsNorth Las Vegas – Ordinance No 2417; An ordinance of the City of North Las Vegas repealing Title 6 of the North Las Vegas Municipal Code regulating animals and replacing the same with a new Title 6, also relating to animals including new and revised provisions governing the licensing, vaccination, running at large and impoundment of animals as well as regulations concerning exotic and vicious animals, animal cruelty and animal care faculties and providing for other matters properly related thereto: Passed and Adopted 01/02/08North Las Vegas – Ordinance No 2418; An ordinance of the City of North Las Vegas amending Title 6 of the North Las Vegas Municipal Code by adding a new chapter (Chapter 16) mandating that all dogs and cats be spayed or neutered except in certain limited circumstances and providing for other matters properly related thereto. Passed and Adopted 01/02/08NEW HAMPSHIREConcord – HB 666-FN – AN ACT establishing a license fee for the sale of animal vaccines  text available upon requestConcord – HB1502 – AN ACT relative to disposal of used (vaccination) needles   text available upon requestConcord – SB375 – AN ACT allowing veterinarians to inform town and city clerks about dogs that have been euthanized.   text available upon requestNEW JERSEYTrenton – A449 – Permits the rabies inoculation of dogs at pounds or shelters under the direction of certain veterinarians    text available upon request.Trenton – A902 – An Act concerning the chaining or tethering of animals, and amending R.S.4:22-17 and R.S.4:22-26  Establishes animal cruelty offenses pertaining to chaining or other restraint of animals    text available upon requestTrenton – A899 – An Act concerning animal cruelty offenses, creating a new chapter of and supplementing Title 2C of the New Jersey Statutes, and amending and repealing various sections of statutory law.  Recodifies offenses against animals under State criminal code; increases degree of crime for certain offenses    text available upon requestTrenton – A928 – An Act concerning attack animals and supplementing Title 4 of the Revised Statutes    text available upon request.Trenton – A1173 – Requires dogs licensed out of state that are brought into NJ to be licensed in NJ within 60 days, and raises penalties for violations of law requiring licensing of dogs and of kennels, pet shops, shelters and pounds   text available upon requestTrenton – A1414 – An Act concerning instruction on humane treatment of animals, supplementing chapter 35 of Title 18A of the New Jersey Statutes and repealing N.J.S. 18A:35-4.1.  Requires public schools to include instruction on humane treatment of animals as part of the Core Curriculum Content Standards in Comprehensive Health and Physical Education.    text available upon requestTrenton – A1418 – Prohibits use of certain underwriting guidelines by insurers pertaining to guide dogs, service dogs, or hearing assistance dogs harbored on the insured property    text available upon request.Trenton – A1568 – Requires all cats and dogs released from shelters and pounds be sterilized with certain exceptions; increases certain dog-related fees; dedicates increases to Animal Population Control Fund; establishes new eligibility criteria for State spaying and neutering program    text available upon request.Trenton – A1591 – Prohibits certain breeding and sales practices; requires persons selling cats or dogs to provide certain information; and provides penalties    text available upon requestTrenton – A1828 – Prohibits sale of any dog by kennel, pet shop or other retail establishment without name, address and phone number of person providing dog thereto; establishes $500 fine for each violation    no text availableTrenton – S234 – An Act concerning the “Law Against Discrimination” and revising various sections of the statutory law    text available upon requestTrenton – S358 – An Act concerning animal cruelty offenses, creating a new chapter of and supplementing Title 2C of the New Jersey Statutes, and amending and repealing various sections of statutory law.  Recodifies offenses against animals under State criminal code; increases degree of crime for certain offenses    text available upon requestTrenton – S363 – Prohibits sale of any dog by kennel, pet shop or other retail establishment without name, address and phone number of person providing dog thereto; establishes $500 fine for each violation.    text available upon requestTrenton – S617 – An Act concerning animal cruelty offenses, creating a new chapter of and supplementing Title 2C of the New Jersey Statutes, and amending and repealing various sections of statutory law.   text available upon request.NEW MEXICOValencia County – County Commission, without public comment, passed a ordinance, in the schedule of fees – 9.0.08 licensing fees: sterilized dog or cat $5….intact dog or cat $25 per animal per year in addition to an intact animal permit fee.  9.0.12 Intact Animal Permits: The fee for persons wishing to maintain an unsterilized animal shall be $100 per animal for each intact animal they choose to keep. Permits shall be good for one year from the date of issue and the fee shall be in addition to any license fee or applicable impoundment fee. Intact animal permits shall be revoked, and the animal required to be sterilized at the expense of the Owner/Guardian, if the animal is found to be running at large, at any time, within the county’s jurisdiction, or it is known that the animal has been bred or allowed to breed.  In addition to the use of the term “owner/guardian” throughout the ordinance – nothing regarding the above has been mentioned at the Animal Shelter Advisory Board meetings.NEW YORKAlbany – A1741  (2007) – Authorizes district attorney to petition for posting of security when animal is impounded as result of abuse   (reintroduced in 2008)   text available upon requestAlbany – A1990  (2007) – AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to the confinement of companion animals in vehicles in extreme temperatures  (reintroduced in 2008)   text available upon requestAlbanyA2610  (2007) – AN ACT to amend the general obligations law, in relation to establishing a cause of action in tort for the wrongful injury to or death of a companion animal  (reintroduced in 2008)   text available upon requestAlbany – A6553 – AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to the tethering of dogs   text available upon requestAlbany – A8032 – AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to the licensing of dogs and to repeal certain provisions of chapter 115 of the laws of 1894, relating to the better protection of lost and strayed animals and for securing the rights of owners thereof, relating to licensing of dogs in certain cities   text available upon requestAlbany – A8502 – AN ACT to amend the general business law, in relation to prohibiting the sale of dogs born on puppy farms by pet dealers   text available upon requestAlbany – A9345 – AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to companion animal hoarding   text available upon requestAlbany – S0865  (2007) – Authorizes district attorney to petition for posting of security when animal is impounded as result of abuse   (reintroduced in 2008)   text available upon requestAlbany – S1282 – AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to the confinement of companion animals in vehicles in extreme temperatures   text available upon requestAlbany – S2052 – AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to the tethering of dogs   text available upon requestAlbany S3526 – AN ACT to amend the general obligations law, in relation to establishing a cause of action in tort for the wrongful injury to or death of a companion animal   text available upon requestAlbany – S6427 – AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to companion animal hoarding   text available upon requestAlbany – City Council will review a proposal Thursday that addresses prolonged barking, imposes a lease law, and requires cages, fences or other constraints for animals identified as violent. The council will review the concept this week and possibly make changes.  The proposal will change the way people will be required to handle their own dogs, and owners of the two singled out breeds, Dobermans and pit bulls, may  complain about the measure.Town of Westerlo, NY – was prevented from enacting a series of very restrictive codes concerning dogs & cats. Among other things 3 dogs & cats in any combination would be considered a kennel. A local couple gathered 500 + signatures against the 7 page document. At a Town Hall meeting the proposed codes were declared a dead issue. The local Judge sealed the issue by declaring it as killed.NORTH CAROLINAHenderson County – County Board of Commissioners approved a new noise ordinance that will go into effect Jan. 1.  Under the new ordinance, deputies will issue civil citations, impound barking dogs at the county shelter, and even arrest those responsible for violations.  The ordinance says that barking dog will be impounded at the county animal shelter for the second or subsequent violations until the following business day for the shelter. The animal must be reclaimed within five days and fees include a reclaim fee plus an additional fee of $3 per day for each day the animal is at the shelter   Effective 1/01/08Henderson County – proposed ordinance would have required pet owners to have their animals spayed or neutered if the animal violated other animal control rules such as running at large or continual barking. That meant the law would be complaint-driven; animal control officers wouldn’t be patrolling the county looking for unfixed animals.   Commissioners held a public hearing on the proposed ordinance earlier this month, plenty of people turned out to criticize the law as too harsh and unenforceable.  Commissioners refused to pass the ordinance and ordered a rewrite.  12/19/07Lincoln – County Commissioners are trying to pass an ordinance that will limit the number of dogs per acre to ten.  The new law will only allow families to have one dog for every 0 .1 acre of land, all because of a complaint a neighbor made about an animal rescue facility located in a patch of farmland near her home.  Defeated 12/17/07OHIOColumbus – HB366 – To amend sections 955.11 and 955.221 of the Revised Code to remove pit bulls from the definition of “vicious dog” in state law and to authorize the adoption of local ordinances or resolutions that define “dangerous dog” and “vicious dog” more broadly than state law defines those terms .   text available upon requestSandusky – City Commissioners decided to be specifically non-specific when it comes to dangerous dog laws.  Commissioners voted 6-1 in favor of a new animal ordinance that does not include breed-specific language targeting pit bull dogs.  Passed 12/11/07OKLAHOMAOklahoma City – state Rep. Paul Wesselhoft confirmed this week he would again author legislation to prevent attacks by vicious dogs.  He plans to write a proposal which is “non-breed specific.” and modeled after similar legislation which passed in Texas.  His new proposal could make a dog’s “first-bite” a felony.  Wesselhoft will introduce his bill when state lawmakers return to the Capitol in February for the 2008 legislative sessionDribble – A woman received two tickets after her goats were caught mating and relieving themselves on her own yard.  City law said it is illegal for any two animals to have sex in public within Dibble city limits.  It’s also against law for them to relieve themselves in public even if the animal is fenced in on private land.Midwest City – after twenty years on the “books” the city is now enforcing an unconstitutional breed specific ordinance.  City is trying to remove two Bull Terriers.  Midwest City is a “home-rule charter city,” which allows it to pass ordinances that may not be in accordance with state law which currently prohibits cities from enacting breed-specific dog bans. .   text available upon requestOREGONMilton-Freewater – City Council proposed amendments to city animal ordinances are meant to strengthen enforcement authority against negligent owners of vicious dogs, code enforcement officer Angie McColley also retooled policy that essentially would ban keeping “livestock” within city limits.  City Manager said the “livestock” section likely would be eliminated, keeping the language pertaining to dangerous dogs.  Under the new proposal a section defining “potentially dangerous dogs.” In the event that a dog commits a vicious act, the owner would be given a final chance to continue keeping the animal.  The owner would be required to pay registration fees, have the dog micro-chipped, spay or neuter the dog and create a photo identification of the dog and its owner. It also would mandate the owner secure the animal in a six-sided enclosure and demonstrate proof of having liability insurance for no less than $100,000.PENNSYLVANIAHarrisburg – HB1065 – Amending Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, further providing for the offense of cruelty to animals.  The bill also would disallow use of tow chains for tethers, mandate the tether be one that does not become entangled and is a minimum length.   text available upon requestHarrisburg – proposed revision of the Pennsylvania Animal Cruelty law makes it illegal for anyone to own or possess a dog or puppy with a docked tail, unless the person can prove that the tail was docked by a licensed veterinarian or has filed an affidavit of proof with a county treasurer that the procedure was done before the law goes into effect. This draft legislation will be presented to the Dog Law Advisory Board this week, prior to being published in The Pennsylvania Bulletin and submitted to the state Legislature.  The proposed law also would apply to nonresidents of Pennsylvania who are passing through the state, or who participate in field trials, dog shows, performance events or hunting here. Several sporting breeds routinely have their tails docked, following breed standards designed to prevent severe tail injuries while hunting, including Brittanys, German Shorthaired pointers, cocker spaniels, various breeds of terriers and several others. Many other breeds that customarily have their tails docked are as diverse as Australian Shepherds, Miniature Pinschers and Rottweilers.  Animal cruelty statutes carry criminal penalties, and in Pennsylvania are enforced by Humane Society officers, county animal control officers and police officers. The proposed legislation also grants power to state dog wardens to enforce all animal cruelty statutes.Harrisburg – Gov. Rendell will unveil expansive legislation next month designed to crack down on bad kennel operators and improve housing conditions and health care for dogs living in the state’s 2,600 commercial kennels. A draft copy of the proposals, which include changes to existing statutes and regulations, was provided to the Inquirer by an administration source.  Animal welfare advocates say among the most important proposals is one that would mandate the revocation of a license held by an owner convicted of animal cruelty within the last 10 years. Now the Secretary of Agriculture has the discretion to allow those convicted of animal abuse to continue to operate. Another provision would require dogs receive annual veterinary care and bar kennel operators from giving their own rabies shots.SOUTH CAROLINABeaufort – City Council passed a ban on dog-tethering this week gives animal control officers discretion in determining whether pets are being treated cruelly, but a county councilman said the city was duped by animal-rights advocates who hid part of the issue.  The ordinance eliminated the three- and six-hour limits and simply states, “No animal … shall be tethered as a primary means of stationary confinement.”  The new language allows officers to use “circumstantial evidence” to determine if a dog has been chained for a long time.  Councilman Bill McBride kept the item off the agenda of the Community Services and Public Safety Committee, which he chairs, saying tethering dogs is not always cruel.  The issue must be discussed in the committee before going before the full council.Charleston – County Council decided Thursday (12/13/07) to let the Charleston Animal Society charge owners if they want their impounded pets back without being spayed or neutered. It would cost $200 initially to retrieve an animal intact and then $1,000 if the pet is impounded a second time within a calendar year.  County Council voted 7-0 to initially approve modifying its laws for stray animals so the local shelter can charge fees for impounded pets returned without having the surgery.  The fines would apply for any impounded cat or dog. Pet owners would still have the cheaper option of simply having their animal sterilized, which the Charleston Animal Society said typically costs $40 to $70.Florence – to begin open discussions regarding “cruelty” laws  (Tuesday 01-08-08)Richland County – new proposal to try and protect the public from dangerous dogs.  One of the changes may be a restriction on the number of dogs that a person can own.  A discussion will take place at the Development and Services Committee meeting on January 29th.TENNESSEEDyersburg – proposed pit bull ban was sent to the public safety committee and FAILED due to lack of support!! On a motion by Walker, however, the council agreed to call a public hearing to receive citizens input regarding the dog ordinance.   FAILED 12/05/07Johnson – City researching possible pit bull ban with or without a grandfather clause.  City Commission will have the final say on the matter. There is no time table yet for discussion.Knox County – Knoxville – State Senator Burchett not able to enact statewide BSL, still wants local MSN.  He wants individual county commissions to pass legislation that would make clinics like Ms. Price’s required for pit bulls.  He admits there’s much opposition to breed-specific animal control.Mount Juliet – an official is pushing for stronger laws governing dangerous dogs in the wake of an attack that left two dogs dead.  The Wilson County town is among several Nashville-area communities that have looked to strengthen animal control laws in hopes of curtailing attacks as more humans and pets have moved in.SomervilleUpdate on Pit Bull ban – City administrator Yaun brought to the board’s attention the pit bull ordinance the board passed recently. A problem has been discovered with requiring owners of the dogs to have $100,000 insurance. Yaun told the committee that at this point, the owners have not been able to find anyone who would write the policy. He said he has talked to several companies locally and they are not interested in writing the policy. Yaun was asked to do some more checking and if they can’t find insurance, they may have to revisit the ordinanceTEXASAustin – HB1411 – new state law that prohibits unreasonable restraints for dogs during the late night hours and during extreme weather should help deter animal cruelty.  Owners cannot leave a dog outside and unattended by the use of a restraint that unreasonably limits the dog’s movement between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. The law further states that in the event of extreme weather including outdoor temperatures that reach below 32 degrees, or a hurricane, tropical storm or tornado warning issued for the jurisdiction by the National Weather Service, a dog cannot be left outside and restrained by a restraint that “unreasonably limits the dog’s movement.”Austin – City Council could soon hear proposed changes to the laws for dangerous dogs in the community, all in an effort to make owners of dangerous dogs follow the law more closely.  Animal Advisory Commission is considering ways to make dangerous dog owners follow the law at their next meeting.Copperas Cove – proposed ordinance prohibits animals and public sporting and recreational events, make molesting animals unlawful and restrict fishing in the city’s park ponds to pole and line only. Other additions require locks on fenced yards, pens and kennels and require signage for all yards with an unattended dog and include definition of the term “dangerous animal” expanded to include any unprovoked attack on a person or animal causing bodily injury.Dickinson – City Council decided to postpone enacting an ordinance banning the chaining of dogs, so it could review the language of the law.  Council would likely discuss the matter during a work session as soon as late February or March.San Antonio – City leaders embraced proposed changes to the Chapter 5 ordinance today, voting to accept the newly restructured laws. The changes include incentives for sterilization and responsible pet ownership including: A restructuring of the licensse process that includes the use of permanent micro-chips in lieu of traditional metal tags that are easily lost. A strengthening of the Dangerous Dog portionn of the ordinnance and the creation of a new Vicious Dog category. Stifferr penalties for those convicted of animal cruelty mirroring tougher state laws. • The creation of permits for excess animals, litters of puuppies or kittens, unsterilized dogs and cat colonies. Limits and restriction regardiing methods an animal can be tethered or tied up. A similar state law went into affect Sept. 1.  A Trap Neuter Return policy that allows resiidents to care for feral cats in their neighborhoods.  The revisited ordinance DOES NOT include mandatory sterilization for all pets. Instead, sterilization will be required for animals that have been declared dangerous, pets that have been impounded more than once and cats that are housed exclusively outdoors. Residents who own cats or dogs they wish to keep them intact can purchase a permit to do so or keep their animals indoors. Many of the proposed requirements actually allow for exceptions based on special circumstances. Examples include excess animal permits, intact animal permits and medical exceptions for animals unable to be sterilized. In addition, there is an appeals process in place for any citizen denied a permit by the department. The dangerous/vicious portion of the ordinance will go into affect immediately. The litter permit, excess animal permit as well as revised permits for pet shop and grooming businesses go into effect March 1, 2008, with implementation of the intact animal permit delayed until Jan. 1, 2009. This will allow for the augmentation of local spay/neuter resources.VIRGINIARichmond HB5 Gas chambers; prohibits use thereof for euthanizing companion  animals    text available upon requestRichmondHB40 Gas chambers; prohibits use thereof for animal euthanasia  Disposal of animals by means of decompression chamber or gas chamber prohibited. No animal shall be euthanized pursuant to the provisions of this chapter by means of a high altitude decompression chamber or a gas chamber.      text available upon requestRichmond HB 158: Dumping trash, companion animals, etc., on highway, right-of-way or private property; penalty   text available upon requestRichmond HB207 – Animal pounds, local; clarifies definition     text available upon requestRichmond HB217 Tethering of animals; makes certain acts associated therewith  Class 3 misdemeanor     text available upon requestRichmond HB457 Veterinarian & animal licensure; repeals requirement to provide  treasurer with rabies vaccination information    text available upon requestRichmond HB537 – Rabies vaccination certificates; exempts records  sent to local treasurers from public access     text available upon requestRichmond HB538 – Commercial dog breeding operations.  Bill would define as a ‘commercial breeder’ anyone who “any person who breeds dogs as companion animals and who maintains 20 or  more unsterilized adult females for the purpose of commercial breeding during any 12-month period.” Commercial breeders would be limited to 50 dogs max, would have to be licensed and inspected, keep specific records, facilities would have to meet certain fire safety standards and there would be other restrictions.     text available upon requestRichmond HB655 – Dangerous dogs; judicial discretion.  No dog that has bitten, attacked, or inflicted injury on a person shall be found to be a dangerous dog if the court determines, based on the evidence before it, that the dog is not otherwise dangerous or a threat to the community.     text available upon requestRichmond HB656 – Animal protection and fighting – Broadens Virginia’s anti-dog fighting law to cover any animal. It adds a interesting ‘surety bond’ provision     text available upon requestRichmond HB673 Animal welfare standards.  Bill changes a number of definitions in § 3.1-796.66    text available upon requestRichmond HB690 – Commercial breeding of companion animals basically would require USDA dealers to also get a license from their localities.   text available upon requestRichmond HB691 – Animal control officers; inspection of breeding facilities    text available upon requestRichmond HB999 – Bond for abandoned or cruelly treated animals     text available upon requestRichmondHB1232 – Failure of dealer or pet shop to provide adequate care; overbreeding; penalty   text available upon requestRichmond HB1289 – Use of gas chambers for animal euthanasia prohibited. No animal shall be euthanized pursuant to the provisions of this chapter by means of a high altitude decompression chamber or a gas chamber   text available upon requestRichmond HB1331 – Bill completely revises and reorganizes Title 3.1 of the Code of Virginia which, contains the Virginia Comprehensive Animal Laws   text available upon requestRichmond HJ163 – Establishes a joint subcommittee of the Senate and House of Delegates to “study issues relating to companion animals.” The findings (whereas’s) at the start include an estimate of 2,784,880 companion animals in VA, that some owners abuse and neglect their animals, that shelters euthanized close to 100,000 out of 230,000 entering animals in 2006, and that violent dogs and dogfighting are addressed in laws    text available upon requestRichmondSB26 Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act; adds organized dogfighting as qualifying offense   text available upon requestRichmond SB498 – A BILL to amend and reenact § 3.1-796.77 of the Code of Virginia, relating to prohibiting the use of gas chambers   text available upon requestRichmond SB592 – A BILL to amend and reenact §§ 3.1-796.113, 3.1-796.122, 3.1-796.124 and 18.2-403.2 of the Code of Virginia and to repeal § 3.1-796.125 of the Code of Virginia, relating to animal protection; penalty.  Animal protection and fighting; penalty    text available upon requestWASHINGTONGrays Harbor County – proposed barking ordinance  text available upon requestTacoma – City council will discuss changes to the city’s animal control ordinance on dangerous dogs and problem pet owners. . Expand the definition of dangerous and potentially dangerous dogs. Unlike some jurisdictions, the rules don’t address a particular breed of dog, but list the types of behavior that could cause a dog to be labeled dangerous. They include an unprovoked attack that inflicts “severe injury” or kills a person; an unprovoked attack that kills or injures a domestic animal badly enough that it’s euthanized; and keeping a dog for the purpose of fighting. . Requires euthanasia or removal from the city for all dangerous dogs. . Prohibits bringing a dog to Tacoma that has been declared dangerous or potentially dangerous in another jurisdiction. . Creates the designation “problem pet owner.” A person who commits three or more animal control violations in a 24-month period could be declared a problem pet owner and forced to surrender all of their animals. . Makes it a civil infraction to sell or give away puppies or kittens born to an unlicensed animal. Owners would be required to include the mother’s license number in any published advertisements of puppies or kittens. . Enacts a complete ban on roosters in the city limits, a response to complaints about noise. Hens are allowed. . Make it a violation to improperly license a pet (to license an unaltered animal as an altered pet.) . Make it a crime to create or use counterfeit license tags. . Make it a violation to leave animal waste on public or private property, unless authorized. . Make anyone younger than 18 ineligible to license pets.WISCONSINMadison – SB208 and AB567 – twin bills currently under consideration by the Wisconsin state legislature which are being touted as “puppy mill” legislation – unfortunately, they have gathered considerable support based on that alone. But if you actually read the text, it becomes apparent that they aren’t just interested in achieving state oversight of large commercial breeders.  Bill also contains a lemon law that applies to everyone in the state of Wisconsin who sells even one puppy – whether they consider themselves a “breeder” or not. If a person sells a pup with a genetic defect or that is sick or injured, the buyer only needs the say of a vet of their choosing and the seller is automatically guilty of a crime, owes the buyer and their vet three times the price of the pup in reimbursement and medical expenses and the state collects a $3,000 fine. If there are two pups within a year, the fine skyrockets to $10,000 for the second infraction plus prison time! Try to fight this in court and the seller could owe the buyer and their vet six times the price of the pup, plus lawyer fees. No proof required. No judge. No trial by jury. The breeder is not protected from false charges.   text available upon requestMadison – Wisconsin Humane Society Is calling for further legislation to “stop puppy mills” and wants “guardianship” for all dogs.  No formal legislation has been introduced to date. OTHER COUNTRIES OF INTERESTKoreaSeoul – Owners of all pet dogs will have to register with the regional government from next year. They will be also required to attach an identification tag to their pet’s neck.Switzerland Zurich – government wants to make all dog owners in Switzerland liable for damage caused by their pets – regardless of breed. Under a draft law, to be discussed by parliament at a later stage, dog owners would also have to take out mandatory insurance.  Bans on dangerous dogs have been imposed or are under discussion in several cantons, but so far there have been no specific nationwide laws on the issue.United Arab EmiratesDubai – Sixteen breeds of dogs face seizure by Dubai Municipality inspectors if they are found loitering in public places without a leash and a mask. The municipality had issued a notice on November 28 branding as dangerous breeds like Doberman, Rottweiler, Husky, Tosa, Bull Terrier, American Pitt Bull Terrier, American Bull Dog, Miniature Bull Terrier, Argentinean Mastiff, Shar Pei, Old English Bull Dog etc as dangerous.  The civic body stated that these dogs were prohibited in residential areas, public places, markets and shopping centers from January 1.  The notice cautioned that the municipality would seize the dogs after the lapse of the grace period. The notice had sparked protests from canine lovers.  Hisham Fahmi, head of the Veterinary Services Section in Dubai Municipality, said, “These dogs are not allowed in residential apartments. The order has been passed as we were getting a lot of complaints from the people residing in the residential apartments. People going for prayers had complained that these dogs were creating a lot of menace and dirt. Also, there were many cases of dog bites in areas like Jumeirah, Al Barsha, Umm Suqeim and Deira,” he said. “If someone in a particular apartment complains about a dog menace, we would be confiscating the dog immediately. The rule has come into effect yesterday. Also, if a dog is taken in a public park or any public place, it should have a mask and a leash. The dog collar should have its registration number and the dog should have been vaccinated. The municipality would be strict if these regulations are not maintained,” he added. The official pointed out that people in the villas could keep one dog. “Though we would not be visiting all the apartments for checks right now, complaint would be handled in a strict manner,” added Fahmi.

RESPONSIBLE DOG OWNERS OF THE WESTERN STATESP.O. Box 1406  Newport, WA 99156Web Site E-mail US rdows@povn.comBlog  E-mail List Cherie Graves, Chairwoman, WA, (509) 447-2821Judy Schreiber-Dwornick, Assistant to the Chair, Director at Large, rdowsdirectoratlarge@gmail.comHermine Stover, Secretary, Press Liaison, CA, hermine@endangeredspecies.comMary Schaeffer, Finance Director, finedogs@hotmail.comCalifornia Director, Jan Dykema bestuvall@sbcglobal.netIllinois Director, Elizabeth Pensgard bpensgard@yahoo.comIndiana Director, Charles Coffman candkcoffman@comcast.netIowa Director, Leisa Boysen rdows_iowa@yahoo.comMississippi Director, Dan Crutchfield farmer1@telepak.netNevada Director, Ken Sondej 4winds@viawest.netOhio Director, Tiffany Skotnicky ohdirrdows@yahoo.comOklahoma Director, Jade Harris aadrlegislation@yahoo.comTennessee Director, Gina Cotton ginacotton@msn.comTexas Director, Alvin Crow OPPOSITION STATEMENT TO WASHINGTON HB 2511 

Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States was formed October 15, 1989 to protect the rights, and interests of dog owners. 


Responsible Dog Owners is opposed to Washington HB 2511 as it violates the commerce rights of the citizen bird, cat, dog breeders of Washington. If enacted as introduced HB2511 will cause the importation of pure-bred cats and dogs bred by breeders outside of Washington in order to meet in state demand for pets. HB2511 acts to the detriment of Washington dog, and cat breeders whose ability to breed and sell pure-bred animals is curtailed by HB2511.


HB2511 unfairly allows not-for profit organizations to breed, and to sell animals unhampered by regulation. These not for profit organizations are importing animals from foreign nations to fill empty shelters.

(See, Tufts: Filling Empty Shelters 

See, USA TODAY:  Dog imports raise fears of a resurgence of disease )


Animal Shelters are being shut down across this nation due to diseases that are carried into the United States by animals imported by not-for Profit animal organizations, and animal shelters. (See, Outbreak of Drug-Resistant Salmonella at an Animal Shelter; See Animal Shelter Shuts Down Due To Parvo Virus See, CDC

Human Rabies — Indiana and California, 2006 

See, Disease shuts animal shelter


HB 2511 violates the United States Constitution under the 5th, 14th Amendment, and the Commerce Clause.  Washington dog, bird, and cat breeders are not allowed to  sell  as many cats, birds and dogs as the fair market allows. No other part of Washington’s animal breeding industry is restricted by legislation.


Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States calls upon the Washington State Legislature to kill HB2511. It is the duty, and the responsibility of the legislature to protect, and defend the rights of the people of Washington. HB2511 is a taking of the property and use rights of Washington’s pure-bred dog and cat breeders.




P.O. Box 1406  Newport, WA 99156Web Site E-mail US rdows@povn.comBlog  E-mail List Cherie Graves, Chairwoman, WA, (509) 447-2821Judy Schreiber-Dwornick, Assistant to the Chair, Director at Large, rdowsdirectoratlarge@gmail.comHermine Stover, Secretary, Press Liaison, CA,

Mary Schaeffer, Finance Director,

Arkansas Director, Roger Schnyer  cajun9@sbcglobal.netCalifornia Director, Jan Dykema bestuvall@sbcglobal.netIllinois Director, Elizabeth Pensgard bpensgard@yahoo.comIndiana Director, Charles Coffman candkcoffman@comcast.netIowa Director, Leisa Boysen rdows_iowa@yahoo.comMississippi Director, Dan Crutchfield farmer1@telepak.netNevada Director, Ken Sondej 4winds@viawest.netOhio Director, Tiffany Skotnicky ohdirrdows@yahoo.comOklahoma Director, Jade Harris

Tennessee Director, Gina Cotton

Texas Director, Alvin Crow

4/12/2007 Letter and info packet to Coeur D’ Alene, ID Mayor concerning proposed BSL
4/14/2007 Letter and info packet and NY State law to Upper Brookville, NY concerning proposed BSL.
4/14/2007 Letter and info packet to Springfield, MO Mayor and Council concerning proposed revocation of BSL
4/15/2007 Letter and info packet to Lexington, NE Mayor and council concerning proposed BSL.
4/15/2007 Letter and info packet to Poulsbo, WA Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
4/16/2007 Letter, info packet and Texas State law prohibiting BSL to DeSoto, TX  Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL
4/16/2007 Letter to Editor Daily Iberian newspaper concerning the ramifications of dangerous dog laws
4/16/2007 Response of thanks for letter and info packet from Councilwoman Sue Frank of Raytown, MO
4/16/2007 Letter and info packet to Wichita, KS Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL
4/17/2007 Response from Coeur D’Alene Mayor Sandi Bloem thanking RDOWS for letter, and info packet.
4/20/2007 Letter to Payette County, Idaho seeking confirmation of public notice of countywide BSL prior to its enactment
4/20/2007 Letter, and info packet to Payette County, ID County Commissioners concerning their enactment of  BSL.
4/22/2007 Letter and info packet to Manhattan, KS Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
4/22/2007 Letter to Commissioner Larry Church, Payette County, ID demanding an apology for his statement on KTVB News. -No Response-
4/25/2007 Letter and info packet to St. Paul, MN Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
4/25/2007 Response from St. Paul thanking RDOWS for info packet and Model Dog Owner Regulations.
4/26/2007 Response from St. Paul, MN Mayor’s office thanking RDOWS for info packet and Model Dog Owner Regulations.
4/26/2007 Letter and info packet to Franklin County, Maine concerning proposed changes in their dog laws.
4/26/2007 Letter and info packet to Bluefield, WV Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
4/26/2007 Letter to Editor Town Crier Manila, AR concerning Manila’s proposed BSL
4/27/2007 Another letter to Manhattan, KS Mayor, and Council concerning proposed BSL
4/27/2007 Letter to Manila AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL
4/27/2007 Received letter of thanks from Councilman Bob Strawn of Manhattan, KS.
4/27/2007 Letter and info packet to Centerville, IA Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL
4/28/2007 Letter of opposition, and info packet  to Dorchester County, SC concerning PeTA’s request to the County Government to pass BSL.
4/28/2007 Created and distributed a flier to oppose CA AB1634
4/30/2007 Received letter of thanks from Manhattan, KS Councilman Jim Sherow.
4/30/2007 Letter, and info packet to Canton, MA Town Clerk, and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/2/2007 Letter and info packet to Somerville, MA Mayor and Board of Aldermen concerning proposed BSL.
5/2/2007 Received letter of thanks from Dorchester County, SC Councilman Richard H. Rosebrock.
5/2/2007 Letter and info packet to Massachusetts Legislature Joint Committee on Municipalities and Regional Government concerning proposed BSL.
5/2/2007 Letter and info packet to Baltimore County, MD Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/2/2007 Letter, and info packet to Springdale, AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL
5/3/2007 Received letter of thanks from Marcie Goodman, Legislative Aide to Baltimore County Councilman T. Bryan McIntire.
5/3/2007 Letter and info packet to State of Massachusetts Legislature Committee concerning changes in the state’s dog laws.
5/3/2007 Letter, and info packet to Lonoke, AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/3/2007 Letter to Renee Lee at Houston Chronicle concerning Texas Senator Rodney Ellis proposed BSL for Houston.
5/4/2007 Letter and info packet to Tennessee Legislature concerning proposed changes in the state’s dog laws.
5/4/2007 Letter and info packet to Ashland City, TN Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/4/2007 Letter and info packet to Tuttle, OK Mayor, and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/4/2007 Letter and info packet to Shelby, MS City attorney Jeffrey Livingston concerning proposed BSL.
5/4/2007 Letter and info packet to Bella Vista, AR concerning proposed changes in their dog laws.
5/5/2007 Letters and info packets to the entire Alabama Legislature concerning protecting dog ownership rights.
5/6/2007 Letters and info packets to the Leaders of the Massachusetts State Senate concerning proposed BSL.
5/6/2007 Letter to the editor Cleveland Plain Dealer concerning proposed BSL
5/7/2007 Created and distributed RDOWS Position Statement on CA AB1634
5/8/2007 Letter and info packet to Albert Lea, MN Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/9/2007 Letter and info packet to Jackson County MS Board of Supervisors concerning proposed changes in county dog laws.
5/9/2007 Letter and info packet to Batesville, AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/9/2007 Letter and info packet to Quitman County, GA Commissioners concerning proposed BSL.
5/10/2007 Letter and info packet to Batesville, MS concerning proposed BSL.
5/10/2007 Letter to reporter V. Roley at Mississippi Press concerning Batesville, MS proposed BSL.
5/10/2007 Letter of opposition to the North Carolina General Assembly concerning SB92.
5/11/2007 Letter and info packet to Jackson County, MS Board of Supervisors concerning proposed BSL.
5/12/2007 Letter to reporter George Knapp KLAS-TV Las Vegas concerning his two part report on Black Market Dog Breeders.
5/14/2007 Letter and info packet to Benton, KY Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/14/2007 Letter and info packet to Marion County, WV County Commissioners concerning proposed BSL.
5/16/2007 Letter and info packet to Jacksonville, AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/16/2007 Letter and info packet to Hutchinson, KS Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/16/2007 Letter and info packet to Gainesville, GA Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/16/2007 Response of thanks from Jill Young, City Managers office Gainesville GA.
5/16/2007 Letter and info packet to Lorain, OH Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/17/2007 Letter and info packet to Long Beach, MS Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL
5/17/2007 Four word response from Alderman Robert Stroud of Jacksonville, AR.
5/18/2007 Letter and info packet to Marion County, WV Commissioners concerning proposed changes in county dog laws.
5/18/2007 Letter from Linda Dulaney City Clerk’s Office Jacksonville, AR stating that she didn’t have Jacksonville’s newly enacted BSL in her computer, and couldn’t e-mail it to RDOWS.
5/19/2007 Letter and info packet to Hesperia, CA Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/19/2007 Letter and info packet to Ansonia, CT Mayor James T. Della Volpe concerning proposed BSL.
5/20/2007 Letter and info packet to Mayor and Metro Council East Baton Rouge Parish, LA concerning proposed BSL
5/20/2007 Letter to Merritt Clifton asking for a definition of “pit bull”.
5/20/2007 Response from Merritt Clifton
“People like to split hairs over breed definitions.I’m not interested in that kind of game-playing.  I have kept separate logs for the different breeds people claim dogs are,  but broad categorizations are much more meaningful”
5/20/2007 Response from Councilman Pat Culbertson East Baton Rouge Parish.
5/21/2007 Letter and info packet to Fairfield. OH Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/21/2007 Letter to Daviess County, KY Fiscal Court concerning proposed BSL.
5/21/2007 Letter opposing CA AB1634 to most California newspapers.
5/22/2007 Dog Politics posted RDOWS List of banned/restricted breeds
5/22.2007 Sent RDOWS Position Statement on CA AB 1634 to the entire California General Assembly
5/23/2007 Letter and info packet to Spaulding County, GA Commissioners concerning proposed BSL.
5/23/2007 Letter and info packet to Lawrence County TN Commissioners concerning proposed BSL.
5/23/2007 The Conservative Voice published “The Animal Rights Myth of Pet Overpopulation” by Cherie Graves
5/23/2007 Letter to News Editor at KSBI-TV concerning errors in its reporting.
5/23/2007 Letter and info packet to Kern County, CA Commissioners concerning proposed M S/N.
5/29/2007 Letter and info packet to Cabot, AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/29/2007 Letter, and info packet to Portage, WI Common Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/29/2007 Yet another letter to the Indianapolis, IN Metro-Council concerning proposed BSL.
5/31/2007 Letter, info packet, and copy of New York State Law pre-empting BSL to Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/1/2007 Letter to Cliff Albert, radio personality who supported passage of CA AB1634 on air.
6/2/2007 Letter and info packet to League City, TX Mayor and Council concerning proposed changes in their dog laws.
6/4/2007 Received letter of thanks from League City, TX Councilwoman Phyllis Sanborn.
6/5/2007 Letter and info packet to Marshfield, MA Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/6/2007 RDOWS Secretary and Media Liaison wrote to CA Representative Lloyd Levine opposing CA AB 1634.
6/7/2007 Letter and info packet to the Town of Rolla, MO Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/7/2007 Letter and info packet to Little Rock, AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/13/2007 Letter, info packet, Model Dog Owner Regulations and Illinois state law prohibiting BSL to the Village of Crossville, IL Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/14/2007 Story concerning Crossville’s illegal BSL in Carmi-Times;
6/14/2007 Letter, and Texas state law prohibiting to El Paso, TX Mayor and Council concerning news report of proposed BSL.
6/14/2007 Letter to Minnesota Representative John Lesch concerning his proposed Bill to ban five, or more breeds of dogs in Minnesota.
6/15/2007 Received response from Karla Parra Legislative Aide to El Paso, TX Councilwoman Melina Castro saying the news report of proposed BSL in El Paso was in error.
6/15/2007 Letter and info packet to the Town of Hampton Falls, NH Mayor and Board of Selectmen concerning proposed BSL.
6/15/2007 Sent copy of Minnesota Constitution Article 1. Bill of Rights to Representative John Lesch of Minnesota.
6/15/2007 Letter to reporter Furst at the Post-Bulletin concerning Re. John Lesch’s proposed BSL.
6/16/2007 Letter and info packet to town of Beebe, AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/16/2007 Sent copy of Arkansas Bill of Rights to Mayor and Council Beebe, AR.
6/16/2007 Letter and info packet to the city of Cabot, AR. Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/18/2007 Letter and info packet to the town of Phillipsburg, NJ concerning proposed BSL.
6/19/2007 Letter and info packet to Warden, WA Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/19/2007 Dexter, MO Board of Aldermen Table BSL;
6/19/2007 Letter to Dexter, MO thanking Board of Aldermen for tabling BSL, and seeking alternative legislation.
 6/19/2007 Letter and info packet to New Florence, MO Mayor and Board of Aldermen concerning proposed BSL.
6/20/2007 Second letter, and copy of Pennsylvania’s BSL pre-emption by state law to Phillipsburg, PA Mayor, and Council concerning their attempt to enact BSL.
6/21/2007 Letter to California Senator Jenny Oropeza thanking her for opposing CA AB1634.
6/21/2007 Second letter to Phillipsburg, NJ with copy of New Jersey state law pre-empting BSL concerning their attempted enactment of BSL.
6/21/2007 Letter and info packet to Paris, AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/23/2007 Letter to Editor St. Cloud Times (MN)
6/28/2007 Letter to East Baton Rouge Parish requesting a copy of their BSL ordinance. NO RESPONSE
6/28/2007 Letter to North Adams, MA Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
6/28/2007 Letter, and copy of Illinois state law pre-empting BSL to the Village of Plainfield, IL concerning their proposed BSL.
6/29/2007 Received letter of thanks from North Adams, MA Councilman Chris Tremblay.
6/30/2007 Letter to Village of Westville, IL Mayor and Board of Trustees with Illinois state law to show that BSL violates Illinois state law.
7/1/2007 Letter and info packet to Dover, DE Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
7/4/2007 Indianapolis Mayor Backs off Breed Ban;
7/4/2007 Letter and info packet to Pascagoula, MS Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
7/4/2007 Letter and info packet to Sulphur, LA Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
7/4/2007 Manhattan, KS: No BSL For Now;
7/4/2007 Letter from Sulphur, LA Councilwoman Nancy Tower thanking RDOWS for info, and requesting that the packet be sent to Coty Attorney Skipper Drost. We did.
7/5/2007 Crossville, IL Rescinds Pit Bull Ban:
7/7/2007 Letter and info packet to Rolla, MO Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
7/10/2007 Letter and info packet to Canton, OH Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
7/10/2007 Letter, info packet, and Pennsylvania state law pre-empting BSL to Reading, PA concerning proposed BSL.
7/10/2007 Letter and info packet to Selma, AL Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
7/11/2007  Received letter from Selma, AL Councilwoman Dr. Geraldine Allen thanking RDOWS for the info packet.
7/11/2007 Faxed letter to California Senators Tom McClintock and Cox concerning RDOWS opposition to CA AB1634.
7/13/2007 Letter and info packet to Sumter County, SC Administrator and Council concerning proposed changes in county’s dog laws.
7/13/2007 Letter to Jon Provost thanking him for testifying in opposition to CA AB1634.
7/14/2007 RDOWS in Greg Sellnow’s Column;
7/16/2007 Letter to LA Times concerning CA AB1634.
7/18/2007 Letter to Washington state Representative Tom Campbell thanking him for re-introducing the non-discrimination insurance Bill HB1105 into Washington’s legislative session.
7/19/2007 Letter to Frostburg, MD Mayor and Commissioners concerning proposed BSL.
7/19/2007 Letter and info packet to Greenville, MS Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
7/21/2007 Letter to Montclair, NJ Mayor and Council concerning proposed anti-tethering law.
7/22/2007 Letter to Atlanta Journal Constitution to set the record straight on Fallacy filled article.
7/25/2007 RDOWS Arkansas Director, and Chairman of Responsible Owners of Arkansas Dogs (ROADs) Inc. did a television interview with FOX affiliate in Little Rock that was broadcast at 5:00 PM, 6:00 PM, and 9:00 PM concerning the breed specific dog laws in Arkansas, and the upcoming legal challenge.
7/25/2007 Letter of thanks to Sandra Kirk of FOX 16 Little Rock for Roger Schnyer’s interview.
7/25/2007 Letter to the Oklahoma State Legislature opposing Representative Paul Wesselhoft’s proposed Felony Dog Bite Bill.
7/26/2007 Letter to the Ohio State Legislature opposing HB 189 Ohio’s Proposed Dangerous Dog Bill.
7/27/2007 Letter, info packet and PA State Law pre-empting BSL to Exeter Township, PA Chairman, and Board of Supervisors concerning proposed BSL.
7/29/2007 Letter of thanks from Oklahoma Representative Earl Sears.
7/30/2007 Letter, and info packet to Laurel, MS Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
7/30/2007 Letter and info packet to Corinth, MS Mayor and Board of Aldermen concerning proposed BSL.
7/30/2007 Letter, and info packet to Clinton, MS Mayor and Board of Aldermen concerning proposed BSL.
7/30/2007 Letter and info packet to Richland MS. Mayor and Board of Aldermen concerning proposed BSL.
7/30/2007 Letter and info packet mailed to Spencer, SD Mayor and Council concerning the passage of BSL. NO RESPONSE
7/30/2007 Letter to Jackson, MS Mayor and Board of Aldermen concerning proposed BSL.
7/30/2007 Letter, and info packet to Marion SD Mayor and Council concerning the enactment of BSL.
7/31/2007 Letter and info packet to Beebe AR Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
8/2/2007 Letter to Ohio Supreme Court concerning Tellings decision.
8/7/2007 Letter and info packet to Hartford City, IN Mayor and Common Council concerning proposed BSL.
8/8/2007 Letter and info packet to McFarland, KS City Attorney Norbert Marek concerning proposed BSL.
8/8/2007 Letter and info packet to Sweetwater, TN Mayor and Commission concerning proposed BSL.
8/9/2007 Letter and info packet to Monterey, TN Mayor and Board of Aldermen concerning proposed BSL.
8/11/2007 Letter and info packet to Wichita, KS Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
8/12/2007 Received letter of thanks from Wichita, KS Councilman Jim Skelton.
8/12/2007 Letter and info packet to Rogers, AR Mayor and Board of Aldermen concerning proposed BSL.
8/12/2007 Second letter, and info packet to Dover DE concerning proposed BSL.
8/13/2007 Roger Schnyer attended Ward, AR City Council meeting. The Ward Council voted to not enact BSL.
8/14/2007 Received letter from Wichita, KS Councilwoman Sharon Fearey thanking RDOWS for info packet.
8/20/2007 RDOWS corresponds with reporter Ruben Rosario of the St. Paul MN Pioneer Press concerning Representative John Lesch’s proposed breed ban in Minnesota.
9/4/2007 Received letter from Ohio Supreme Court acknowledging receipt of RDOWS letter.
9/6/2007 Letter and info packet to Arkadelphia, AR Mayor and Board of Directors concerning proposed BSL.
9/7/2007 Letter and info packet to Youngstown, Ohio Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
9/7/2007 Letter and info packet to Cincinnati, Ohio Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
9/8/2007 Letter to Florida Representative Perry E, Thurston concerning RDOWS opposition to HB 101 a Bill to overturn Florida’s state level BSL pre-emption.
9/8/2007 Letter to New Jersey Senator James “Sonny” McCullough concerning BSL.
9/11/2007 Received letter from Cincinnati, OH Councilwoman Y. Laketa Cole, president Pro-tem thanking RDOWS for info packet.
9/12/2007 Received letter from Cincinnati Councilman Leslie Ghiz thanking RDOWS for info packet.
9/13/2007 RDOWS sends letter of thanks to American Dog Breeders Association, Inc. for all of their help and support.
9/13/2007 Letter of request to Beebe AR for a copy of their BSL ordinance. NO RESPONSE
9/17/2007 Letter and info packet to Takoma Park. MD Mayor and Board of Aldermen concerning proposed BSL.
9/19/2007 Letter and info packet to Mr. Phil Eldridge, Esq. City Attorney for Geneva County, Alabama concerning proposed BSL.
9/21/2007 Letter and info packet to Canfield, Ohio Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
9/22/2007 Letter and info packet to Youngstown, Ohio Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
9/23/2007 Letter and info packet to Sandusky, Ohio Mayor and Board of Commissioners concerning proposed BSL.
9/24/2007 Received a letter of thanks to RDOWS from Sandusky, OH Commissioner Dan Kaman.
9/24/2007 Letter to Baltimore County, MD Executive, and County Council concerning proposed BSL.
9/24/2007 Letter to Halls, TN Mayor Trent McManus concerning proposed BSL.
9/25/2007 Request to reprint TOOLS FOR THE ENDANGERED DOG OWNER from Denise Groenwald, President GSDC of North Georgia -Permission granted
9/25/2007 Letter and info packet to Jackson County NC Chairman and Board of Commissioners concerning proposed BSL.
9/26/2007 Letter to Abbeville, LA Mayor and Council concerning a newspaper report of possible BSL.
10/1/2007 Letter, Illinois State Law and info packet to Johnston City, IL Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
10/2/2007 Letter, and info packet to Nebraska senator Vickie McDonald who proposed changes in Nebraska’s dog laws.
10/2/2007 Received letter from Nebraska Senator Vickie McDonald’s Senior Legislative Aide Mikki McCann assuring RDOWS that Senator McDonald is not interested in introducing BSL, and that the Senator understands the need to hold dog owners responsible for the care, training and control of their animals.
10/8/2007 Letter and info packet to Mayor Robert “Bob” Morris of Somerville, TN concerning their BSL.
10/8/2007 Letter and info packet to Dyer, TN Mayor and Council concerning enacted BSL.
10/9/2007 Letter, and info packet to Councilman Tim Pape of Fort Wayne, IN concerning proposed changes to their dog laws.
10/15/2007 Letter to Illinois Senator Martin Sandoval concerning his breed specific comments anti-Illinois State level pre-emption against BSL.
10/20/2007 Letter to Liz Wiehl at Fox News concerning mandatory spay/neuter.
10/27/2007 Letter, and RDOWS Model Dog Owner Regulations to Wabash, Indiana City Council concerning proposed changes in their dog law.
10/29/2007 Letter to WWE concerning the inappropriate use of rottweiler photos.
11/01/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to Salem, TN concerning proposed BSL.
11/03/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to South Sioux City, NE concerning proposed BSL.
11/06/2007 Letter to Ohio Representative Shawn Webster concerning Ohio HB366, proposing RDOWS Model Dog Owner Regulations instead of DDL.
11/07/2007 Letter to The Honorable Judge Elizabeth Doyle concerning the Tammy Grimes Trial.
11/07/2007 California Director Jan Dykema wrote letter to Reporter Tony Lopez at KOVR-TV explaining dog show terminology.
11/08/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to Hazel Park, Michigan Mayor and Council concerning proposed BSL.
11/09/2007 Letter, Texas State Dog Laws, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to Copperas Cove, Texas concerning proposed BSL.
11/11/2007 Responded to request from Sulphur, LA to comment on their proposed anti-tethering ordinance. RDOWS sent P.S. on Containment. The Ordinance did not pass.
11/12/2007 Letter, Illinois State Dog Laws, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to the Village of Merriam Woods, IL. Concerning their proposed BSL.
11/16/2007 Letter, Illinois State Dog Laws, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to The Village of Burnham, IL. Concerning proposed BSL.
11/16/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to Tennessee State Senator Tim Burchett concerning his proposal that Knox County pass BSL.
11/17/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to Knox County, TN Board of Commissioners, including letter to Senator Burchett.
11/17/2007 Letter, and copy of the Illinois Bill of Rights to the Village of Burnham concerning Home Rule.
12/01/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to Mark Jones Director of Knox County, TN Health Department concerning proposed BSL.
12/03/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to The city of Rockwood, Tennessee concerning proposed BSL.
12/03/2007 Letter, and copy of Spokane Superior Court Decision finding Spokane’s DDL unconstitutional to Little Rock, Arkansas Mayor and Council.
12/05/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to The City of Shannon Hills, Arkansas concerning their current BSL.
12/06/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to CITY OF EDDYVILLE, IOWA, concerning proposed BSL
12/06/2007 Letter, and Model Dog Owner Regulations to Blount County, Tennessee concerning their proposed BSL.
12/11/2007 Letter, and copy of Spokane Superior Court decision finding Spokane’s DDL unconstitutional to South Sioux City, Nebraska.
12/18/2007 Letter, Copy of Illinois State Dog Laws, Model Dog Owner Regulations to Farmington, IL concerning proposed BSL.
12/22/2007 Letter to reporter Tom Henry of the Toledo Blade concerning the Tellings case.
12/31/2007 Letter to Linda Satter Arkansas Federal Court reporter for Arkansas on Line thanking her for her excellent coverage of ROADS, inc.’s Federal Lawsuit against Lonoke, Beebe, North Little Rock, and Jacksonville, AR.

No matter if you choose to give a home to a shelter dog, or to a pure-bred do your homework. Ask all of the right questions so that both you and your new dog are happy with each other. A dog is a commitment of your time, an investment of your money, and a responsibility for the entirety of the dog’s life.

Most people do not see sixteen years or more stretching out before them when they fall in love with a cute puppy. They only think in the here, and now. Be aware that the beautifully groomed, and impeccably mannered dogs that you see on Animal Planet’s televised dog shows are the products of many generations of selective breeding for stable temperament, intelligence, trainability, and sound healthy body structure. The owners put intensive training, socialization, and meticulous grooming into the dogs to bring them to this example of perfection. Each breed of pure-bred dogs were developed for a particular purpose. Working dogs, sporting dogs, field dogs, terriers, and most hound breeds are high energy, and need lots of exercise.

Select a dog that suits your life style, just as you would select an automobile. If you have a large family, a two seat roadster might make your heart yearn, but it would not be a practical family car. If you have a tiny city apartment a Scottish Deerhound isn’t recommended. Consider not only your lifestyle, but also the dog’s needs. Once you have decided upon a pure-bred dog, next choose a breeder. Take your time. Look for the right person. The one with whom you feel comfortable, one who doesn’t try to rush you into a sale, but reassures you that if you are willing to wait he/she will be willing to work with you to be sure you get exactly the puppy that you want. Do not be in a hurry. Be as selective in choosing a dog as you would be buying any other large ticket item. You will be paying for the dog for the entirety of its life. Think of it as a long term investment of the heart, and wallet.

Pure-bred dogs from reputable breeders come with a registration paper, a pedigree, a shot record, a worming record, a health certificate, and a written contract/guarantee.

If you have decided to open your home, and heart to a shelter dog be just as cautious. Shelters being not for profit corporations do not have to meet the same health requirements as do private dog breeders. They can, and do import animals from China, Romania, the Middle East, the Caribbean, and Mexico.(1) These dogs do not have to meet the same quarantine requirements for importation that do the dogs that are bought by private individuals from foreign breeders. In fact shelters are being shut down all over the USA from out of control diseases from imported strays brought in to fill the empty cages.(2) Rabies is a concern.

Although the Center For Disease Control issued a press report claiming to have eradicated rabies in domestic pets in the USA, an 11 year old California boy died from a strain of rabies that there were no medical protocols to treat.(3) Be sure to ask where the dog originated, and try to get proof that the dog is healthy, and has been socialized..(4) Try to obtain as much information as possible. The health, and safety of yourself, and your family comes first. Shelters do not have to guarantee the dog’s health, or temperament, or your safety.


 Pet Underpopulation: The Pet Shortage in the US by Laura Baughan

(2) Dog imports raise fears of a resurgence of disease

Outbreak of Drug-Resistant Salmonella at an Animal Shelter

Disease shuts animal shelter (Las Vegas)

(3) Rabies Treatment Saves One, Does Not Work for All,2933,267191,00.html

Human Rabies — Indiana and California, 2006

(4) 8 Things You (Probably) Didn’t Know About Dog Shelters

ABC NEWS: 300,000 Imported Puppies Prompt Rabies Scare

Cherie Graves, chairwoman Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States

P.O. Box 1406

Newport, WA 99156


 Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States was formed October 15, 1989 to protect the rights, and interests of dog owners. Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States takes the position that dogs are valuable property. Dogs are among the most ancient of property of human beings. Before human beings settled to a plot of land, or threw a seed in the soil, they were dog owners. Archaeological digs have found evidence of dog ownership tracing back more than thirty-five  thousand years to a time before the written word. With writing came documentation of dog ownership, and use. Ancient texts extolled the virtues of  hunting, guarding, and herding dogs, all evidence of their value as the property of human beings.  From the time of  the domestication of dogs human beings have not only trained dogs to be of intrinsic value for working along side us, human beings selectively bred dogs to have physical attributes to better perform their duties. Sight hounds, scent hounds, guard dogs, herding dogs,  were among the first to be selectively bred to serve mankind. Some of the earliest writings dedicated to dogs was the preservation of the pedigree. A pedigree is a dog’s lineage, it’s family tree. Before we human beings knew about genetics, it is apparent from breeding records that selective breeding was understood. Selective breeding has created dogs of every size, and form from a wolf-type progenitor. Human beings would not have bothered if  dogs were not valued property. The only animals, other than cats,  and horses that have been so selectively bred following domestication were those that were used for food, or for clothing.  That we human beings have steadfastly held to dog ownership proves that dogs are valuable property.  The longer that human beings have owned dogs, the more breeds were developed to serve in ever expanding capacities, so that in today’s society dogs are trained to aid the hearing impaired, the sightless, those persons with physical disabilities, as well as continuing to perform the most ancient of duties, those of hunting, herding, guarding, and protecting human beings and their possessions, and property.  Only in the most recent of times, and with the advent of the so-called animal rights movement has there been an effort to define dogs as not property, but as entities under the law.  This movement has vowed to remove all animal ownership, and use from society.  In order to accomplish this end, animals, including dogs must be given a status as legal entities over, and above property.  Historically, and legally dogs are, and must remain the rightful, valuable property of human beings.   It is very important to understand exactly what the definition of property is before agreeing to give it away. We tend to devalue the idea of property, as “just property” thus showing our ignorance, and disregard for our precious rights of ownership. Property is divided into two classes: real property such as land, or real estate, and personal property meaning everything to which we own title that is not land or real estate.   The ownership of property is one of our most precious rights granted under the Constitution of the United States of America. It establishes we the people as individuals with the freedom to control our own lives. The founding fathers of this great land came from European kingdoms where all of the people, and all of the land, and all of the animals, and all of the goods belonged to the monarchy. They understood that ownership is freedom.  The right of property ownership is given an important place in our enumerated freedoms.  Ownership, and possession of property are two different things under the law. Ownership gives the title holder the right to retain,  and to enjoy your property to the exclusion of all others. Possession is the right to temporary custody and does not necessarily include the right to title. For example a renter of an apartment, or garage, or the lessee of a dog or a bitch for breeding purposes has temporary possession without ownership. The landlord, or registered dog owner has the title, and all of the rights that accompany ownership, but is not in temporary possession of said property. Property can be acquired in numerous ways, it can be bought, inherited, received as a gift. A sale transfers ownership from the seller to the buyer. It is the expected responsibility of the owner to maintain the property in such a manner as to cause no harm to either the property, or to the surrounding neighbors, or neighborhood. With ownership, comes responsibilities that are not incurred by those persons having simple possession, such as a guardian. A guardian is simply a buffer between the actual owner i.e. the landlord, or in the case of animals, or human beings the government. The guardian has no intrinsic rights of possession, that possession is transitory and is subject to the terms of agreement between the true owner, and the guardian. A guardian has no rights in buying, selling, or trading of property. A guardian is financially responsible for the property while said property is in his/her possession.  Emotional attachment in an animal is an important reason to retain ownership, rather than relinquishing said ownership. An owner has a legal right to possession. Only when an owner’s negligence, or carelessness gives due cause for the removal of the property may authorities take legal steps to remove that property from the ownership, and possession of the titled owner.  Each case must be tried on an individual basis so that all owners are not subject to the same punishments as the irresponsible, careless, or negligent owner.  There has been great headway made in the Courts of this land to overturn breed specific legislation by the American Canine Foundation, after the initial losses incurred by American Dog owners Association. Animals are among the most ancient of traditional property. If we wish to continue to have animals in our possession, then we should fight strenuously to retain our ownership, and property rights.

On September 17, 2007 the County Council of Baltimore, MD put forth its proposed Bill entitled, AN ACT CONCERNING REGULATION OF PIT BULLS AND MENACING ANIMALS.  It can be found here;

The Bill is six pages filled with urban myth. It starts off with this incredibly wrong statement;

WHEREAS, pit bulls as a breed of dog, have characteristics that have been selectively bred into or are otherwise commonly found, and these characteristics may be intensified by improper treatment or training; these generally exhibited traits include, but are not limited to, (i) powerful instincts for dominance; (ii) a strong prey drive; (iii) a stubborness that results in sustained unyielding aggressiveness once an attack begins; (iv) powerful jaws capable of crushing bones and hanging on to victims even while the animal withstands infliction of injury or pain; and (v) a combination of stamina, agility and strength; and

WHEREAS, the combination and evolution of these characteristics in pit bulls and the exhibition of these characteristics in encounters injurious to humans and other mammals have served to evidence the breeds dangerousness; and

WHEREAS; other cities, counties, and states have found that pit bulls are dangerous to humans and other animals that restrictions on them are warranted; and

Whereas; in response to recent attacks by pit bulls and other dangerous animals, many of which were unlicensed animals, the Council deems it necessary to suppliment the 1997 legislation by providing additional regulations for pit bulls and dangerous and menacing animals in order to protect the public health and safety;…..

Is this law, or the Baltimore County version of a Grimm’s monster tale?  So after averring that the “pit bull”  is a “breed”, the council then names the American Staffordshire Terrier, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and the American Pit Bull Terrier, THREE SEPARATE AND DISTINCTIVE BREEDS!!! There is not one whit of proof that a provably pure-bred member of any of these three breeds is menacing Baltimore County, Maryland. The owners of these three breeds of dogs are being singled out for exceptional treatment under this proposed Bill.

There was only one state, Ohio that had breed specific legislation at state level. It was overturned in a landmark decision. The Baltimore County Council uses the time worn excuse that most teenagers fall back on to bolster their reasoning for doing something that they know is wrong; So, and so has done it so it must be okay!

If all of the myth that is parrotted in Baltimore County’s proposed Act were true, why isn’t the U.S. government hiring these dog breeders to create super war dogs for the U.S. military? Why aren’t police departments not using the techniques that have created the mythological monster dogs portrayed in the Act? How is it that breeders are so genius at manipulating genetics, but so incapable of  providing proper containment for their monster dogs?

One the one hand the Baltimore County Council portrays “pit bull” breeders as cunningly evil persons having the capability to manipulate genetics beyond the abilities of top scientific researchers in genetics . On the other hand the owners/breeders are portrayed at prognathous jawed, low foreheaded, knuckle-dragging idiots that do not have the mental capacity to control the monsters that they have so brilliantly created. This is the stuff of urban myth, and urban myth is being pushed through the Baltimore County Council as law.  This is an outrage. Laws are supposed to be able to withstand the rule of reason. One need not be an attorney to find all of the flaws that are set forth in the preamble to the Act. Anyone one who has the ability to reason will see that not only is the act predicated upon nonsense, it violates a citizen’s rights to equal treatment, and equal protection under the law.

Cherie Graves, chairwoman
Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States



The animal rights movement as those who would take our animals from our care, and nurture prefer to be known, is the enemy of all owners/breeders, and practitioners of animal husbandry. They support, and encourage the passage of breed specific dog ordinances that started with the “pit bull”, and have expanded to name upwards of seventy-five recognized breeds, plus any mixed breed that contains as an element of it’s make-up any of those breeds.  They support, and expound upon mandatory spay/neuter of all privately owned dogs, and cats, as though they have a personal proprietary interest in the animals that are rightfully owned by others. They push for mandatory licensing of pet animal husbandry practitioners, better known as breeders.  Their impetus is to use our legislative bodies, at every level to remove our animals from us, and to annihilate tens of thousands of years of the human/ animal bond. They are trained to use techniques that make them appear to be experts on all aspects of animal ownership, and laws. I have chosen to call this movement the animal takers.  It is in our own best interest to learn to recognize their strategies, so that they will not manipulate us. Animal taking zealots endeavor to deceive people into believing breed myths. The following chapter deals with animal takers myths of the absolute as pertains to the “pit bull”. 


Absolute: All pit bulls are dangerous, unpredictable killers.

Hmmm, wouldn’t that make them predictable? Not one of the numerous registries that operate in any nation registers a breed of dog as “Pit Bull”.  The term “pit bull”, used to mean any dog whose owner used it for pit fighting. It was a functional term that has been distorted, and used now to define actual breeds of dogs. Under the guise of banning “pit bulls”, upwards of twenty-five actual breeds of dogs have been named in bans, prohibitions, or restrictive ownership ordinances. Dogs are as individual as are we human beings. No two dogs within a given breed are exactly the same, just as no two human beings within any given race are exactly the same. Similarities to each other are either physical breed characteristics, or learned behaviors. It is not only erroneous to characterize all dogs of a given breed as being exactly alike it is exceedingly foolish.

Absolute: All pit bull breeders/owners are dog fighters.

This is not only a false accusation it is libelous. The American Pit Bull Terrier, the American Staffordshire Terrier, the Bull Terrier, and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier owners have a very high percentage rate of conformation show entries, obedience trial entries, and are engaged with their dogs in sanctioned sport competitions such as fly ball, agility, weight pull, schutzhund, tracking, when compared to other breeds of dogs owners. Check with registry statistics.  We do not deny that dog fighting exists. It is not an openly conducted activity.  In truth dog fighting has increased exponentially since the Humane Society of the United States set its sights on the once legal, and sanctioned sport, that was conducted under strict rules.  HSUS fought for legislation to make dog fighting illegal. They succeeded, and dog fighting is bigger than it ever was as a legal, and sanctioned activity. The preceding statements are not meant to condone dog fighting, but to give a historical perspective.  The vast majority of dog owners whose dogs are targeted in breed specific ordinances are law abiding citizens, and are responsible for, caring, and nurturing of their dogs.


Absolute: All pit bulls are bred to possess supernatural traits.

That “pit bulls” possess locking jaws is the most common mythical misconception. No canine has the ability to lock, or unlock its jaw. There are three head types in dogs. Not one of which has a lock. There is the brachy-cephalic, it is the pushed in face with the protruding under jaw like the Pug dog in the movie Milo and Otis. It has the least bite strength of all head types. The mesocephalic is the most common type head in dogs. The Dalmatian is a mesocephalic type of dog breed. The length of muzzle approximates the length of top skull. It is the strongest configuration. The third head type is the dolicho-cephalic. It is the long narrow head with a long muzzle.  The Collie is a dolichocephalic type breed.  These breeds do not depend upon strength of jaw, but upon their teeth that are used for slashing.  Most of the breeds that are named in breed specific legislation fall under the mesocephalic head type, but not all, there are several of the brachy-cephalic breeds, and even a few dolichocephalic breeds. This should be indicative to any thinking person that the umbrella term, “pit bull”, is a convenient blind for city councils, and county boards to use to remove all domestic dogs from ownership, in a piecemeal way.

The not stoppable, appear out of nowhere, disappear, attack without warning, etc., myths are the stuff of horror movies. These stories confer supernatural powers on domestic dog breeds, but have no basis in reality. Newspaper articles are reported in such a manner as to evoke fear in the reader, and to reinforce the urban myth. They offer no proofs, only rhetoric. As dog owners our responses to these reports must be reality based, and we must openly question any reports of the supernatural kind. All dogs are corporeal. No dog is capable of appearing, or of disappearing.  All dogs are stoppable.  All attacks are triggered. The people, who are involved, may not know what triggered the attack, or they may know, and choose not to divulge what they know to the media, and to the police.

Absolute: All “pit bull” breeders are geniuses of genetic engineering

If we believe the myths that surround the “pit bull”, then we must believe that their breeders possess an innate ability to manipulate their dog’s genes to reproduce without fail a monster of mythical proportions. These breeders can do what the greatest geneticists in the world cannot; they can make a dog that conforms unerringly to a prescribed, and uniform mold, each and every time. Not even automobile manufactures can make identical cars when using all standard parts.  

Absolute: All “pit bull” breeders are imbeciles of genetic engineering

In a direct contradiction to the myth above, the detractors describe the physical ailments, and crippling genetic defects that are purportedly rampant in the “pit bull”, hip/shoulder dysplasia, myocardia, cataracts one would believe that their breeders are incapable of producing a sound physical specimen of dog. If we believe this myth, then breed specific legislation is a waste of time, and money to implement, and enforce, because the dogs are well on their way to extinction. Genetic defects are reported in purebred dogs because their breeders are the ones who spend the money, and care enough about their dogs to test them. Breeders strive to produce healthier dogs through eliminating dogs that are defective from their breeding programs.  To use the facts that purebred dogs have defects in order to sully the reputations of breeders is an exploitation of the breeders concern for producing healthy animals.   

Absolute: All BSL proponents are pit bull experts, but can’t define them

Ask the most vociferous “pit bull” hater to define the term. You will quickly discover that a “pit bull” is any dog which animal control deems as such. There is no set definition. There are at least twenty-five actual breeds, plus uncounted mixed breed dogs that are now labeled as “pit bulls”, and the list is growing.  The takers, and various legislative bodies have wrongfully cited, or misused breed standards as a means of identifying dog breeds. Breed identification is not the purpose of a breed standard. A breed standard is a written device that is used by dog show judges to determine, or measure the standard quality of the conformation of each pure-bred, registered dog of any given breed in the show ring, at a sanctioned dog show. The judge is not guessing what breed is being judged. Dog show judges are tested on their knowledge of the breed standard, and it’s application prior to being licensed to use that breed standard in a sanctioned show. A judge is tested, and licensed separately for each breed that he, or she is allowed to judge. Breed standards are copyrighted documents. American Kennel Club parent breed clubs are owners of their breed’s standard copyright. Other breed standard copyrights are property of the breed registry. Any misuse of dog breed standards is a violation of intellectual property rights of the copyright owner.  

Absolute:  Only titled, health tested show dogs should be allowed to breed. 

This removes a whole dimension of working dogs, hunting dogs, service dogs that will never see the inside of a show-ring. The whole idea of show dogs is elitist on one hand, and arbitrary on the other hand. It is elitist to believe that a dog that has earned conformation titles is superior to a dog that works on a cattle ranch, and earns it’s way, and provides help to it’s owner. The rancher will put far more value on his dog’s working ability than upon it’s conforming to a show standard of quality.  The rancher is far better equipped to know whether his dog should be used in a breeding program than any arbitrary government body. The idea that government imposes mandates upon who may, or may not practice animal husbandry, and mandate an impractical standard for the animals to be used within that program, exceeds the scope of government, and is a taking of ownership, and use rights.

Health testing is a tool that is at the disposal of any animal owner/ breeder who wishes, or needs to use it. The test results show the tested animal’s health for the day that the tests were done. They do not project guarantees into the future health of the animal, nor do clear test results guarantee that any offspring of the tested animal will test clear. Testing is an option, it should never be mandated.

Absolute: It is wrong for a breeder to profit from breeding, and selling dogs.

A dog breeder is supposed to spend thousands of dollars, and not see a return that will be reinvested back into the dogs.  According to the detractors of dog breeders, in order to be responsible, a breeder must have endlessly deep pockets, and always spend, never, ever breaking even, let alone operate a real business based upon doing what one loves, and is proficient in. How would this absolute myth apply to any other business? Tell it to ATT, FORD, YAHOO, MICROSOFT, TYSON, H$U$, PeTA. In any business the measure of success is to see a financial return that is based upon the quality, desirability, and usability of said product.

 Absolute: All dog/cat/pet breeders must be licensed, and obtain breeding permits

Animal husbandry is an ancient, noble, and respected human occupation. Its beginnings are lost in the remote past. A license is a temporary, revocable permit that is issued by government that allows the holder to have something, or to do something that is illegal to have, or to do without the license. This is simply another ploy to remove our animal ownership, and use rights. Our animals do not belong to the government. We do not live under a socialist, or a communist government that holds ownership over people, and their property.

 Absolute: All dogs must be spayed/neutered

No government in the United States of America has the power to mandate invasive surgical procedures be performed upon privately owned animals. Animals belong to their owners. Animal’s reproductive organs likewise belong to the owners. Governments do not have the power to take away constitutional, or traditional property rights. It is solely up to we the people to stand firmly, and to refuse to capitulate to the taking of our ownership, use, and property rights in our animals. This is a legislated extinction of domestic pets.


Personal attacks take the place of evidence

Once you have made logical inroads into the taker’s ideology, you will be a target for personal attacks, especially if you have a website, or you are an officer, or a director in any dog/cat club, or organization. You may be accused of being a “shill”.  Your appearance, or choice of apparel may be critiqued. There is nothing too despicable for these takers to stoop to when trying to discredit us.

Goading us into anger

The takers are skilled in haranguing, if we show the least irritation that is where they will concentrate their attack. If we watch carefully, and learn their techniques, we can avoid being goaded into anger.

Changing the subject

The takers will ask personal questions to try to take the topic where they want it to go. We must be alert, and stay on track. Our information is far more important than their ideology. Our reasons for joining a blog, or a public forum is to put useful, educational information into the hands of the readers, and to expose the animal takers for the ideological zealots who are bent upon removing our pets from us.

Attempt to divide the defenders

The takers will be working together to reinforce their position. They will try to detract from the valid points that the defenders make. One of their frequently used tactics is to use personal attacks that are aimed at the defenders, or at their dogs.  It is very important for our side to reinforce our position without using the rude, personal attacks that are often employed by the takers.

Promoting “breed/breeder” hatred

Breeder is not a four-letter word. The takers will make it appear to be in the same context as child molester, rapist, murderer, or any number of heinous criminal activities. A breeder is a practitioner of the ancient, and noble art/science of animal husbandry. It is a legal business, and an admirable calling.  Without breeders we would have no dog breeds, nor would we have any of our domestic animal species. That is why breeders are so hated, and vilified by the takers. Their goal is a complete severance of the human/animal bond. Our dogs/animals are the product of our applied art/science. In the minds of the takers our animals are not worthy of life, as they are the product of our, their breeder’s, vision, and effort.

Accusing the defenders of doing whatever is true of themselves

As chairwoman of Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States, I was accused of being a shill for the animal industry. My accuser refused to divulge any information as to who, or what entity or group that she/he was fronting for.  It was obvious that this person was promoting an agenda of BSL, breeder licensing, and mandatory spay/neuter. It was a very slick and polished presentation.

Hide behind anonymity

Forums or blogs allow screen names to be used so as to hide the identity of the person who is commenting. The supporters of restrictive, and oppressive animal legislation tend not to use their real identity. I always use my own name, and I sign with all of my contact information. I want everyone who reads what I write to know that I have the courage of my convictions. I want everyone to know how to contact me should they want, or need any more information.

Claim to be experts, yet show no credentials

Having been involved in debates with the takers on public forums I always put forth all of my credentials. Any person who is promoting an agenda but refuses to divulge anything about them self on a professional level is not believable. These are the people that are filling blogs, and public forums with the takers agenda. They offer no credentials only a very polished presentation. The presentation hardly varies by a word or two from forum, to forum carried by a scripted anonymous army. Always ask who, or what organization that they represent. Ask why they hide behind the shield of anonymity if they are truly such advocates.

Attempt to discredit those defenders who do have credentials

Any defender who is accessible through running a search engine may be made the target of the attack. This person may be challenged on his/her physical appearance, choice of wearing apparel, and any number of things that have no bearing upon the subject matter of the discussion. I was asked if I was a member of the NRA. I did not respond. Neither the question, nor my answer would have been of any benefit to the topic under discussion. My personal website was brought into the discussion. It is important to recognize these tactics that are used to discredit us, it is a tactic to move the conversation away from the topic.

Isolate one defender to befriend, and another to denigrate.

A divide, and conquer technique is frequently utilized to distract the defenders. One defender may be befriended by one of those pushing the taker’s agenda, while several others may gang up on a different defender. This tactic is quite often very successfully used against novice defenders. 


 The animal lover

Example; “I have a pit bull, but I believe that they should all be spayed, and neutered, and the owners licensed. What are you afraid of?” The opening statement is an opinion. The question is an assumption that we are clinging to a baseless fear concerning the relinquishment of the ownership of our animal, and its reproductive organs.

The Victim

Animal taking zealots may employ a false victim to gain sympathy.  This person will call for a ban based upon a claim of having a friend, or a relative who was maimed, or killed by a “pit bull”.  This person is unable to give any provable facts when pinned down by a defender.


The “objective” person

May claim that he/she owns no dog, but agrees with the takers point of view.  Ignore this person. Why call attention to him/her? It does our side no good, and is a wasted effort. This is another distraction technique.

The sleeper agent

Disguises him/herself as an owner supporter when in fact he/she is an agent provocateur. This is Mr./Ms. Perfect who does everything by the book. You know the book.  It might be that cookbook with all of the perfect pictures that no real person in a real kitchen could ever replicate. Those photos are supposed to be reality, but no matter how hard we strive, we mere mortals will never create the false reality of Mr./Ms. Perfect.

The accuser

Animal taking zealots accuse breeders/owners of being irresponsible for not buying into the totalitarian propaganda of mandatory spay/neuter, breed bans, or mandatory breeder licensing.  The takers attack on a very personal level here. We must ask where the precedent for all of this taking of our animals comes from. We must ask where this has been in effect, and for proof that it works. San Mateo, Ca is the only place that comes to mind for setting a precedent on mandatory spay/neuter, and mandatory breeder licensing. The dog breeders compromised with the takers, and lost their rights. Even so, it is a dismal failure. Point it out after arming yourself with information. 

Animal taking zealots employ actions, and words to put animal owners on the defensive. That is okay; we are defending our ownership, and our use rights.


Debate openly

Do not hide behind anonymity.  Only those who are not open, and above board have need to hide behind the screen of anonymity, think Wizard of Oz. If you are honestly concerned about retaliation, do not join in a public forum, or blog.  Put a credential behind your name. If you belong to a dog club you can add “Member, Alpha Dog Club” behind your name. It lends credibility.

Stay on topic

It is very easy to be taken off track by a skilled activist agitator. They will ask personal questions. They will do, say, or write anything to devolve a logical defense into a free-for-all, name-calling debacle. Think before you write. Your response is not only going out to the agitator, it is going out to an audience that you want to educate.

Ignore personal attacks

Point out personal attacks that are directed at you, but refuse to lower yourself to defending them. Personal attacks that are made by strangers are diversions. Do no allow yourself to be diverted along a path of the attacker’s choosing. Use your free will. You get to choose how, and to whom to respond. Ignoring the attacker, and putting your point across strengthens your position.

Offer proof

Prove every point that you make when defending our position to retain our ownership and use rights. Never write, or say anything in a public forum that you cannot immediately prove. If in doubt, leave it out.

Use humor

Humor slays zealots, they do so want to be taken seriously. Ridicule, done as gentle humor brings a perspective that simple denial will not.  The humorist is generally perceived as having superior knowledge. He/she not only sees the joke, he/she shares it.


Never allow anger to take control over your writing, or speaking

It is okay to write, “This makes me angry.” It is not okay to allow anger to take you to a place that is harmful to the dog owner’s positive image.  Our detractors are portraying us as the out of mainstream fringe element. We are the only one’s who have the power to dispel the projected image.  Each individual dog owner is responsible for ensuring that he/she is perceived as a law abiding, respectable citizen who is concerned with public safety, as well as protecting the rights, and freedoms that are characterized in our Constitution.

Treat the enemy with politeness, and respect 

Give your adversary the benefit of being a fellow human being. Being polite and respectful, even after being verbally abused shows the general public that you are secure in your position. People will certainly forget your name, but they will always remember how you made them feel. When we are writing on a public forum, it is extremely important to make the entire readership feel comfortable with our point of view.  We must treat each person as though he/she were an invited guest that we want to share our message with.  Our objective is to win the hearts, and minds of the readers who are not posting. We are dealing with two different groups of people. We are firstly dealing with the promoters of the taking of our animals.  Secondly we are dealing with the average citizen who is not caught up in the struggle, but has no doubt been adversely affected by the urban myths that so permeate our society. We will never change the minds of the takers. That is not our objective. Our objective toward them is to blow huge gaping holes in their ideological arguments, so that the secondary group starts to have doubts about their agenda. Our next objective is to speak with logic, to prove our points, to bring in the laws that are on the books, and to persuade the citizens that we are more like them, than are the detractors. It is human nature to align with those who sound the most as they do.

Expose the lies, distortions, and myths

Do not enter into a battle of ideology that you have not made preparation to win. Before joining in a blog, or a public forum be prepared. The takers come prepared. They have read, and book-marked every book written about dog fighting, or fighting dogs. Richard Stratton’s books may be introduced into the discussion. He may be quoted as the final authority in order to bolster their position. They will apply his writing to not only the dogs that he writes about, they apply it to breeds that they have determined are “pit bulls”, and are not the dogs that Mr. Stratton has immortalized in his books. This ruse is meant to bring our side into discussing the books, and away from the topic. They assume that everyone who owns “pit bulls” has read Richard Stratton’s books. That is an erroneous assumption. I have not read his books. Having not read his books, I can neither confirm, nor deny any point that they are trying to establish by using quotes from his, or any other author’s book. I can only state with honesty that the opinions expressed in any book, are certainly those of the author.

Know your enemy

The dog takers have done their homework thoroughly. They expect that you have not. If you find yourself in over your head, then please depart before you cause harm.  Never write, or speak without giving considerable thought as to what you will say.  The takers will use every opportunity to twist your words into a meaning of their choosing.

Know yourself

You are the only expert on yourself. You know your strengths. Use them. You know your weak areas. Do not expose them. It is okay to say, ”I don’t know.” It is far better to admit that a topic is not your area of first hand knowledge, than to forge blindly onward and cause our side to lose ground. Always stay within your own personal comfort zone of knowledge, and information. That is where each of us is strongest.

Know the law

There is nothing more traditional than animal ownership, use, and animal husbandry. The rights that are enumerated under our Bill of Rights are not our only rights. Our framers created the Constitution, and our Bill of Rights not to be all-inclusive, but to lay the foundation of law for the people of our free nation. If they had tried to list every right, and every freedom that we the people might enjoy, then surely we would be restricted. Our rights, and our freedoms are bounded only by our moral, and social obligations to have a functional society. The framers were wise beyond their time, and beyond their worldly scope. To prevent any such similar takings of our traditional property, or our animals, and to prevent the cessation of any ancient, noble, and honorable profession such as animal husbandry, they wrote: AMENDMENT IX. The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny, or disparage others retained by the people.AMENDMENT X.The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.


Besides these two Amendments that reaffirm our rights of traditional human occupations, we also have the right to be recompensed for any taking of our property. Our animal’s ovaries, and testicles belong to us. If the government is going to mandate a taking, it had better be prepared to PAY!!! To pay for the surgeries, for those citizens who will comply, to pay for loss of the viability of the animal, or to buy out the real property of the animal owner, whose right to its full use and enjoyment has been removed due to the government’s arbitrary removal of it purchased purpose.

Learn from every encounter

Do not join a blog, or public forum expecting to sway the animal taking extremists to our side. You will lose. They are equally as committed to their idealism, as we are committed to preserving our animals, their ownership, and our traditional animal husbandry practices. The objective is to put forward usable information that is backed up with proof, and to sway the people who are undecided.  The animal taking zealots have nothing that is tangible to take. They are pushing an ideology. We, on the other hand have the tangible, living, breathing, animals that count on us to protect them. Even though our animals have no way of knowing it, they are dependent upon us for the continuation of their breed, and their gene pool to survive into the future. We cannot succeed by entering into compromise agreements with the animal taking zealots. They have nothing to offer us from their ideology. We have everything to lose. The very worst thing that anyone from the animal owner side can do is to accept any part of the opposition’s ideology. That acceptance will grow like a malignancy until it engulfs us, and our dogs, and our traditions, our way of life, our freedoms, our past, our present, or our future.

Cherie Graves, chairwoman
Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States
323922 N. Hwy. 2
Diamond Lake, WA 99156


American Staffordshire Terriers
“Home of the swinging, flying show dogs”


“The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.” —Marcus Aurelius

Compiled by BSLWorkshop 06′

Fort Smith decides against BSL Bald Knob-decides against BSL Shannon Hills-decides against BSL Searcy-decides against BSL Mulberry-decides against BSL 
ColoradoSB054-doesnt passGolden-decides against BSLEstes Park-decides against BSLNorthglenn-decides against BSLLaJunta-decides against BSLLayfayette-decides against BSLLongmont-decides against BSLParker decides against BSLRocky Ford-decides against BSLFederal Heights-decides against BSLWestminster-decides against BSL
DelawareNew Castle County-decides against BSL
GeorgiaFloyd County decides against BSLRockmart–decides against BSL
IllinoisKewanee-decides against BSLWaukegan-decides against BSLMcHenry County-decides against BSLNormal-decides against BSLNorthlake-removes BSL languagePaxton-decides against BSLForest-decides against BSLBloomington-decides against BSLWill County-decides against BSLChicago-decides against BSLNorth Chicago-decides against BSLLincolnshire-decides against BSLHodgkins-decides against BSL
IndianaAnderson-decides against BSL
IowaDavenport decides against BSLHumboldt- decides against BSLMason City-decides against BSLWaterloo-decides against BSL
Kansas Leavenworth-decides against BSLWitchita-decides against BSL
Frankfort -decides against BSLLietchfield-decides against BSLMilton-decides against BSLLincoln County-decides against BSLSpencer County-decides against BSLMiddlesboro-decides against BSLOldham County-decides against BSLPaintsville- decides against BSL LouisiannaGonzales decides against BSLLake Charles-decides against BSLSulpher-decides against BSL
MassachusettsSalem-decides against BSL
MissouriBelton-repealedBellfontaine Neighbors-decides against BSLOak Grove-decides against BSLUnionville-decides against BSLJennings-decides against BSL
New Jerseystate-TABLED
OhioLancaster-decides against BSLEast Palestine-decides against BSL
PennsylvaniaWilkes Barre-decides against BSLHazelton, Pennsylvania-decides against BSL
TennesseeBedford County-decides against BSLWoodbury- decides against BSL
TexasKilleen-decides againt BSL
WisconsinMadison decides againt BSL 

RESPONSIBLE DOG OWNERS OF THE WESTERN STATES Cherie Graves, chairwoman Hermine Stover, secretary 323922 N. Hwy 2 23280 Stephanie Newport, WA 99156 Perris, CA 92570 509-447-2821 951-943-0990 POSITION STATEMENT ON DOG CONTAINMENT Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States favors all forms of dog containment to the owner’s property. Our experience with dogs is that as long as a dog is trained, socialized, and given proper attention that the containment method is not a factor in it’s behavior, or temperament. Dog behavior only becomes problematic when a dog is not properly trained, not properly socialized, and not given proper attention. All dogs need to have some freedom within limitations. Constant kenneling, constant chaining, or constantly living on a cable run with no off time makes a dog highly protective, even obsessive of it’s territory. Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States believes that the individual dog owner is the best authority to choose from this list of approved methods of dog containment, with added specifications, for his/her dog(s). KENNELING; A kennel must be large enough for a dog to comfortably have a house, move room, a place to eliminate body waste, a concrete slab floor, or patio block floor over sand to prevent digging escape, and for ease of cleaning. It must have an escape proof roof cover with protection from the elements. Shade must be provided for at all times. A rubber mat, or a horse stall mat prevents pressure sores. The dog should be taken out of the kennel several times a day for training, play, and/or attention. STEEL CABLE RUN; A ½ inch diameter steel cable is run tautly between two in-ground mounts that are made of bent rebar sunk in concrete twelve feet apart, and two feet deep, leaving a six inch high loop of rebar above ground level. The cable is secured with cable fasteners. The dog’s chain is attached to the steel cable by a large steel O-ring, of a strength that cannot be broken by the dog. The chain should be six feet long, and of a strength that the dog cannot break. The collar should be made of leather, not chain, and of a strength and quality that it cannot be broken. The run area must be free from entanglement obstructions. The dog must have adequate housing to protect it from the elements, and shade must be provided at all times. The dog should have several off cable times each day for training, play and/or attention. A perimeter fence should be in place to prevent trespass by children, or animals not belonging to the dog owner. TETHERING; A strong center mount attachment may be employed to safely tether a dog. That mount may be made of a length of rebar bent into a hairpin shape, and sunk in cement two feet deep, leaving four inches of the bend above ground, or any other strong, escape-proof type mount, including an automobile axel. Attach a break-proof chain to the rebar with an O ring, or swivel snaffle of sufficient strength that it cannot be broken. The chain must be at a minimum four times the length of the dog. Use a strong leather collar of a quality that cannot be broken, not a chain around the dog’s neck. Remove any entanglement obstacles from the immediate area. Adequate shelter must be provided along the perimeter of the tether area to protect the dog comfortably from the elements. Shade must be available at all times of the day. The dog should have several off tether times each day for training, play and/or attention. A perimeter fence should be in place to prevent the trespass by children or animals not belonging to the dog owner. HOUSE DOGS; Dogs whose owners contain them to the house, or apartment must ensure that his/her dog receives adequate exercise to maintain a healthy cardio-vascular system. House dogs need time outside in the sunlight to absorb vitamin D. House dogs are prone to having toenail breakage, and they must have proper toenail care. Often house dogs become overweight from too much food, and lack of exercise. Going outside should be more than just a trip for elimination of bodily waste. House dogs need training, socialization, and play times, too. IN CONCLUSION; In today’s society dog containment is a must to protect not only the animal, but the neighbors, and their animals, as well as the dog owner him/herself from liability. RDOWS approves all of the above methods as long as the dog has adequate attention, exercise, care and nurture. All equipment must be regularly maintained to prevent injury, or escape of the dog. Each owner’s property will differ, so no one method works for all. The key to having a healthy happy dog is it’s all around care, and nurture. That care, and nurture must include training, socialization, attention, and play time. FOR MORE INFORMATION, OR INSTRUCTION CONTACT; Responsible Dog Owners of the Western States at;