Schwarzenegger vetoes two pet-related bills

October 12, 2009 at 2:42 am Leave a comment

Pet Info

AB 241 and AB 243 got the veto this afternoon. (Links go to bill language, in PDF format.)

AB 241 set the limit of intact animals a “breeder” could own at 50,  with advocates arguing that anyone who had that many intact animals or more was, in effect, not able to care for them properly and was, as such, a puppy mill.  That’s a reasonable assumption in many but not all cases, and it’s also one that should not have focused solely on people with intact animals.

Again, intact animals aren’t necessarily being used for breeding, and can be kept from doing so without surgery in any case.  The presence of an animal’s reproductive system is not in and of itself a badge of irresponsible ownership or breeding intent, and I want people to start realizing that — even if spay-neuter really is the best choice for most pets and most owners.

In other words, make limit laws reasonable if we’re to have them at all. I agree 50 is in the proximity of reasonalbe, though I can without much effort think of many reasonable exceptions, of people who have in excess of that number of well-cared-for animals (such as breeders of working dogs and, of course, sanctuaries, shelters and rescues, although the latter group got a pass with this bill). Laws also must to be gonad-neutral in addressing irresponsible ownership, especially in light of studies showing spay-neuter isn’t without risk to an individual animal.

Or better yet, let’s stop focusing on gonads and limits and let’s really discuss what animal-care practices could and should be a matter of law. Caring for pets  is not a one-size-fits-all proposition, and the law should reflect that.

And next time, maybe we can bring all animal-loving stake-holders to the table ?  Have the responsible breeder community quit siding with puppy-milling scum and the mandatory spay-neuter folks stop hating anyone who breeds a litter ethically and responsibly? What say we  look for common ground and work together?

Hey, I can dream, can’t I?

AB 243 made what is now a  judge’s option in sentencing mandatory, that those found guilty of animal cruelty not be allowed to own animals again. I don’t get the governor’s problem with this one at all, and think it should have become law.

Interesting to see if there’s further comment from the governor’s office on these. Here are the veto messages: 241 and 243, again in PDF format. The veto message on 241 does suggest that the regressive, hate-driven forced spay-neuter SB 250 would have gotten the boot. Good to know.

Still waiting on other animal-related bills as the governor pushes to meet his deadline. Including SB 135, which even the dairy industry didn’t oppose. C’mon governor: Cows need their tails.…

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