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Archive for January, 2007

California Legislative Alert 1/1/07

**Many thanks to Virginia Handley (virginia@animalswitchboard.org) for compiling this information on animal-related legislation, and to Rose Lernberg for sending it out … and for giving me permission to reprint it here so more people can have a chance to read it. They’re the best!**

California Legislative Alert 1/1/07
You can obtain official legislative information by going to this web site: http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/bilinfo.html
By entering the number of the bill, you can access the bill text, status, committee analyses and roll call votes.

Next Legislative Meeting: Monday, Jan. 8, 2007. 10 a.m. to Noon, Room 113, State Capitol Building, Sacramento.

Agenda: New Legislation, Expected Legislation, Possible Legislation. Regulations. All animal advocates welcome.

The 2007-2008 Legislative Session begins Jan. 3, 2007. Deadline for submission of possible bills is Jan. 26.

Deadline for introduction of new bills is Feb. 23.

CALIFORNIA FISH & GAME COMMISSION
1416 – 9th St., Sacramento, CA 95814

Trapping Regulations
The Fish & Game Department will propose trapping regulations and will write an Environmental Document. The Commission is required to "consider the welfare of individual animals" and in the past each document had a chapter on it. The Department has changed it from "welfare" to "effects" in an effort to get away from the concept of welfare.

AB 87 passed in 2006 to make it clear that "pest" control operators do not have to get a Fish & Game license to trap mice, rats, gophers and moles. SB 1645, passed in 2002, requires "nuisance" and predator control wildlife trappers to get a Fish & Game license to trap coyotes, raccoons, opossums, skunks, etc. Many trappers do not tell their customers that the animals will be killed if not released on site. Nor do many of them have licenses due to lack of enforcement.

Next Hearing: Feb. 1 or 2, Monterey.

Write: California Fish & Game Commission. Tell them to reinstate the chapter entitled "Welfare of the Individual Animal" as required by law for the Commission to consider. Ask them to enforce the existing law requiring "nuisance" and predator control trappers to have licenses and ask that the list of licensed trappers be available to the public. Also ask that they include specific requirements for the humane handling of wildlife, including bats.

Turtles and Frogs in Live Animal Markets.
The Commission voted to "go to notice" to pass a regulation to prohibit the importation of turtles and frogs for the live animal markets. But the Department has taken no action to submit the regulation. They are telling the Commission that the issue is the responsibility of the Health Dept., Food & Ag. Dept. and local animal control.

Next Hearing: Feb. 1 or 2 in Monterey.

Write: California Fish & Game Commission. Tell them to follow through on their legal action to protect our native wildlife from the non-native turtles and frogs who are imported by the hundreds of thousands (frogs by the ton) and commonly released. They deplete populations of California wildlife such as the endangered Western Pond Turtle and the Red Legged Frog. The importation also contributes to the illegal pet trade of baby turtles born to captured wild turtles for the market.

Advisory Committee on Humane Treatment of Wild Animals.
The Fish & Game Department has advised the Committee that they should conduct meetings under the Open Meeting Act to avoid any possible lawsuit. That means the public can attend and participate in the meetings. The Committee advises the Department on inspection procedures to enforce permit requirements and minimum standards for keeping wild animals in captivity.

Next Meeting: Jan. 25, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., 1416 ­ 9th St., Room 1206, Sacramento.

CALIFORNIA COASTAL COMMISSION
45 Fremont St. #2000, San Francisco, CA 94105. 415-904-5200

Navy Sonar. Oppose. The Navy plans military exercises starting in February off the southern California Coast that includes mid-frequency sonar training to find enemy submarines. Sonar puts out ear-splitting noise that impacts all sea life, including migrating whales.

Next Hearing: Jan. 10, 200 S. Pine, Long Beach

Write: California Coastal Commission. Tell them that the sonar should not be allowed. It is extremely destructive and painful. Its negative impacts are well documented but ignored by the Navy.

CALIFORNIA VETERINARY MEDICAL BOARD
1420 Howe Ave., Sacramento, CA 95825. 916-263-2610

Rodeo Injury Reports
Current law requires veterinarians who cover rodeos to report injuries to the Vet Med. Board. 2006 had no report and 2005 had only one. Veterinarians are not complying or, when on-call, are not being called. The Vet Board should make it clear to the vets that not reporting is a violation of law and clarify what specific information is required in the report.

Next Meeting: Jan. 24 at UC Davis or Sacramento.

Write: California Vet Med. Board. Tell them current law is not serving the animals without their cooperation and instruction.

Posted on Friday, January 5th, 2007
Under: Animal protection legislation | No Comments »

SEXY BEAST — canine style unleashed

"Announcing Sexy Beast, a design-driven, luxury brand that unites the pet and beauty industries to create a new genre called ‘pet beauty.’"

One of the first things I do when I get to work every morning is check out the strange press releases that arrive by e-mail during the night. As I’ve told you before, animal columnists get some pretty weird stuff in the mail. That’s why I like to share them with you. Maybe they’ll inspire you to grow up to be an animal columnist some day.

Like the one below that just came in this morning from a PR agency named Behrman Communications in New York City.

Until now, I thought I’d seen everything. Apparently not:

Behrman Communications Announces its Representation of Sexy Beast

"Designed specifically for dogs, Sexy Beast is a collection of fine fragrance and three finishing products that are to be used daily as a three-step system to extend the time between grooming appointments. Sexy Beast is more than just a collection of products for dogs — Sexy Beast is a lifestyle brand. Today dogs are more than just pets to their owners; they have become an extended part of the family."

Boy, wait until my cats hear about this.

Posted on Thursday, January 4th, 2007
Under: Pet Perfume | 1 Comment »

New animal laws in California for 2007

Hard to believe I’m writing this on January 3, in the year known as 2007. It doesn’t seem like a new year.

I wonder what happens to the old years? Do they go some place to die, like the elephant’s graveyard?

Speaking of the new year, here are a couple of new animal laws that may help make 2007 kind of an interesting year:

** SB 1806: You can’t leave animals unattended in a motor vehicle "under conditions that endanger the health or well-being of an animal due to heat, cold, lack of adequate ventilation, or lack of food or water, or other circumstances that could reasonably be expected to cause suffering, disability, or death to the animal."

First time violators face fines of $100 unless the animal suffers serious injury. If the animal suffers serious injury, owners or guardians can be fined up to $500 and imprisoned for up to 6 months. With a second and subsequent violation, owners or guardians will face fines up to $500 and imprisonment for up to 6 months.

This law will help save animal lives by allowing animal control officers to immediately break into cars and rescue animals in trouble, without having to call the police and wait for precious minutes for someone else to come and do the deed.

** SB 1578: With few exceptions, "No person shall tether, fasten, chain, tie, or restrain a dog, or cause a dog to be tethered, fastened, chained, tied, or restrained, to a dog house, tree, fence, or any other stationary object" for longer than three hours in a 24-hour period.

Punishable by up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Hopefully this will help stop poor dogs from being chained in a yard, sometimes for days at a time.

I’ve already received one e-mail from a dog owner on SB 1806, complaining about not being able to leave the dog in the car while the owner is working. "I have precious little time with my beloved doggie and am most annoyed that the state is trying to take away even more of my quality time."

Ah, yes, I predict 2007 will be an interesting year.

Posted on Wednesday, January 3rd, 2007
Under: Animal Laws | 11 Comments »