As a pet owner myself, I can tell you Stanly, Pepper and I applaud members of the Ohio legislature for passing Amended Substitute Senate Bill 130 into law. The law imposes new measures to curb many of the worst abuses of high volume dog breeders that are prevalent in the state.
The new law requires the licensure and annual inspection of high volume breeders that sell 60 dogs or produce at least nine litters in a single calendar year. The law also creates a Commercial Dog Breeding Advisory Board to assist the director of the Ohio Department of Agriculture in developing standards, including rules on housing, nutrition, exercise, waste management, grooming, whelping and other general care standards. Additionally, the law prohibits anyone convicted of animal cruelty in the last 20 years from obtaining a license – a provision designed to stop the influx into Ohio of puppy mill operators who have been forced to close their operations in other states due to animal cruelty charges.
We have a long way to go in making Ohio a better place for our four legged friends but this bill is a step in the right direction. Ohio is home to 174 federally-licensed dog breeders and brokers – fifth most in the nation – and to at least another 1,000 additional high volume dog breeders, all of whom will be subject to licensure and inspection under the new state law.