Category: Pending bills
|February 22, 2018||Posted by Laura Allen under Animal Cruelty, New Jersey, Tethering-Penning|
New Jersey’s new care requirements for dogs and other pets and service animals has already proven an effective tool for animal control and law enforcement trying to save animals from exposure to bad weather and inhumane tethering. The new law signed August 7, 2017 amends Title 4, Chapter 19 of New Jersey statutes and provides:
a. No dog, domestic companion animal, or service animal may be exposed to “adverse environmental conditions” for more than 30 minutes unless the animal has continuous access to shelter which means an enclosed, insulated structure with a solid roof, walls and floor with an opening no larger than to allow the animal to enter and exit comfortably, provide shade, and keep the animal at a normal body temperature.
(“Adverse environmental conditions” means (1) when the ambient temperature is 32 degrees F or below, or there are other conditions, such as wind, rain, snow, ice, sleet, or hail, such that a person should reasonably know would pose an adverse risk to the health or safety of the animal, based on the animal’s size, age, physical condition, or thickness of the animal’s hair or fur; or (2) when the temperature is 90 degrees F or above, or the animal is exposed to direct sunlight or hot pavement, such that a person should reasonably know would pose an adverse risk to the health or safety of the animal, based on the animal’s size, age, physical condition, or thickness of thickness of the animal’s fur.)
b. In the event of an evacuation order, it is now illegal not to make every effort to take pets to a safe location. They may not be left indoors unattended or tied up outside.
c. All dogs and other pets and service animals must have access to proper shelter regardless of the weather. If the animal is not in the house, he or she must have access to a structure that (1) has ventilation, (2) allows the animal to remain dry and maintain a normal body temperature, (3) allows access to clean, nonfrozen water, (4) provides exposure to natural or artificial light according to a regular cycle of day and night, (5) has sufficient space so that the animal can easily turn around in a full circle and lie down on the animal’s side with limbs outstretched, and (6) has at least three inches of empty space above the head of the animal when the animal is in a normal sitting or standing position in the shelter;
The shelter must be maintained in a manner to minimize the accumulation of any waste, other debris, precipitation, or other moisture inside, surrounding, and underneath the shelter, and to provide reasonable protection from flooding. The shelter must remain upright at all times and be soundly constructed to prevent the sagging or collapse and with no sharp points or edges.
Crawl spaces, areas under a vehicle, structures made with pressure treated wood, cardboard, or other materials easily degraded by the elements won’t comply. And no wire or chain link flooring or really any flooring with openings that allow a paw or hoof to fall through.
These shelter requirements do not apply to breeders, kennels, pet shops, shelters or pounds.
Those laws that have time limits on tethering dogs have in some cases proven difficult if not impossible to enforce. California’s 3 hour limit on tethering is an example. In this New Jersey law, persons are prohibited from tethering dogs from 11 p.m. until 5 a.m. outside and must allow the dog to move 15 feet in any one direction. There are exceptions if the person is outside with the dog or can see the dog at all times. The new law also prohibits tethering outside in adverse weather conditions for more than 30 minutes. Any dog tethered more than 30 minutes must have access to clean non frozen water.
There is also a ban on tethering nursing females and puppies less than four months old.
There are restrictions on the types of collar and tethers that can be used, a ban on tethering with other dogs or on vacant lots or in abandoned buildings.
What You Can Do
The new law requires municipalities or cities to educate the public about the new law. Your help is invaluable in protecting dogs and other pets from weather and inhumane tethering. If you see a potential violation, note the date, time and location; write down the details, and take photos or video. Then call animal control, NJ SPCA or the police. Follow up if the situation is not fixed. There is no provision allowing a concerned citizen to rescuer to take an animal held in violation of these laws. But the authorities may do so if they have a reasonable suspicion the animal is at risk of imminent harm. There are otherwise provisions for corrective warnings, fines, seizure pursuant to a warrant and the like.
|February 19, 2018||Posted by Laura Allen under Farm Animals, Federal, Pending bills|
In 2013 Rep. Steve King (R-IA) introduced a provision that would have effectively taken away the ability of state and local governments to pass laws requiring better treatment for farm animals. That provision did not become law, but now Rep. King is trying again with his bill, HR 3599
King’s bill, H.R. 3599, would target, for example, the 2010 California law that prohibits sale of eggs in the state that are from hens kept in conditions inconsistent with Cal Health & Saf Code Sec. 25990. That law, known as California’s anti-confinement law for farm animals, requires that “for all or the majority of any day”, egg laying hens must be able to lay down, stand up and fully extend their limbs or wings without touching the sides of an enclosure or other hens, and also turn around freely. See further Cal Health & Saf Code Section 25991.
Under Congressman King’s bill this California law could not be applied to foreign egg producers that want to sell eggs in the state. Other jurisdictions could sell eggs from hens cruelly crammed into battery cages and likely undercut the prices of local egg producers that must meet state humane standards.
King’s amendment would wreak havoc with efforts of local citizens to stop animal cruelty and threaten protections not only for egg laying hens and other farm animals, but also laws that prohibit or regulate puppy and cat mills and other animal breeders, ban horse slaughter and protect wildlife. The King amendment would threaten state and local standards for food safety, environmental protection and worker safety. Rep. King would force every state and locale to open its markets to those producers with the worst standards. Don’t let Congressman King undermine state’s rights and turn the clock back centuries on standards for animal welfare, the environment, and food and worker safety.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
Urge your U.S. representative (letters, post cards, or calls are best) to vote NO to H.R. 3599.
|February 16, 2018||Posted by Laura Allen under Federal, Wildlife|
a. Taking black or brown bear cubs or sows with cubs (exception allowed for resident hunters under customary and traditional use activities at a den site October 15-April 30 in specific game management units in accordance with State law);
b. Taking brown bears by luring them with bait for a point blank kill;
c. Taking of bears using cruel leghold or other traps or snares;
d. Taking wolves and coyotes during the denning season (May 1-August 9);
e. Taking bears from an aircraft or on the same day as air travel has occurred. (A similar regulation already applied to wolves or wolverines.)
In repealing the regulations by federal statute, the Congress and Trump Administration made it impossible for FWS to re-issue the regulations under a later administration. Instead, it will take another federal statute to make these activities illegal on Alaska National Refuges to the extent they are not prohibited by state law.