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Cloned animals, spay/neuter & other new animal laws in Sacramento

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Here’s the status of 2008 California Animal Legislation as of Sept. 18.

If you like, or dislike any of these laws, write your legislators and the Governor and tell them how you feel about it. The address for legislators and Governor: State Capitol Bldg., Sacramento, CA 95814; 916-322-9900
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Posted on Tuesday, September 23rd, 2008
Under: Animal Laws, Animal protection legislation, Cats, dogs, Wildlife | No Comments »

Status of new pet laws in Sacramento

Here’s the status of 2008 CALIFORNIA ANIMAL LEGISLATION in Sacramento, California.

If you like, or dislike any of these laws, write your legislators and the governor and tell them how you feel about it.

The address for legislators and Governor: State Capitol Bldg., Sacramento, CA 95814, 916/322-9900

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Posted on Monday, August 18th, 2008
Under: Animal Laws, Animal protection legislation, Cats, dogs, Farm Animals, Pets, Spay/Neuter, Wildlife | No Comments »

What to do with the S.F. Zoo?

A story in today’s San Francisco Chronicle says the San Francisco Supes supposedly want to turn the S.F. Zoo into a facility for rescued animals.

According to a report I heard on KCBS News radio about this story on my way into work this morning, the S.F. Supervisor measure would require that any future animal acquisitions at the zoo could only be rescued animals, such as animals confiscated by law enforcement from people who owned them illegally.
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Posted on Friday, August 8th, 2008
Under: Animal protection legislation, Animal rescue Organizations, San Francisco Zoo | No Comments »

We need stronger humane laws! Animal abusers have too many loopholes

This is as bad as it gets:
“Santa Cruz Animal Services officers confiscated 38 dogs and puppies Saturday after finding ‘more dead dogs that we could count’ and dog heads hanging from trees.”

Some crazy guy in Santa Cruz County, Calif., is found to be abusing dogs. Animal control officers discover an unknown number of dead dogs and rotting carcasses and dog feces throughout his house … starving dogs chained with no food or water … body parts everywhere … decapitated dog heads hanging from trees … puppies …
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Posted on Tuesday, July 29th, 2008
Under: Abuse, Animal Cruelty, Animal Laws, Animal protection legislation, Animal welfare, dogs, Humane Laws | 6 Comments »

Prop 2 will keep us from torturing our food animals

A study produced by UC Davis researchers and released yesterday provides further evidence that Proposition 2 is good for California consumers.

The study, which was reportedly funded by the American Egg Board, evaluated the economic impact of Prop 2, the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act, which will appear on the statewide ballot in November.

According to the study’s authors, “little, if any cost increase and no substantial impact on prices to California consumers” will occur when voters approve Prop 2. The measure would prevent the cruel and inhumane confinement of calves raised for veal, breeding pigs, and egg-laying hens kept in crates and cages so small they cannot lie down, turn around, or extend their limbs.
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Posted on Monday, July 28th, 2008
Under: Animal Laws, Animal protection legislation, Animal welfare, Chickens, Food Animal Abuse | No Comments »

2008 California Animal Legislation — What’s up in Sacramento

Animal bills for 2008 as of June 13.

Many of the following bills have not yet been assigned to committee or set for hearing. More bills may be discovered. We’ll let you know if and when they are.

This information has been compiled by Virginia Handley of Paw PAC, PO Box 475012, San Francisco, CA 94147, 415-646-0622 (voice mail). See their Web site, http://www.pawpac.org, write or call for a copy of the 2007 Voting Chart.
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Posted on Monday, June 16th, 2008
Under: Animal Laws, Animal Politics, Animal protection legislation | 4 Comments »

California Animal Legislation for 2008

Animal bills for 2008 as of March 3

Many of the following bills have not yet been assigned to committee or set for hearing. More bills may be discovered. We’ll let you know if they are.

This information has been compiled by Virginia Handley of Paw PAC, PO Box 475012, San Francisco, CA 94147, 415-646-0622. See their Web site, http://www.pawpac.org, write or call for a copy of the 2007 Voting Chart.

To see actual copies of these bills go to http://www.leginfo.ca.gov

THE BILLS:

AB 1634 by Assemblyman Lloyd Levine re: Spay/Neuter. SUPPORT.
Requires six month old dogs/cats to be spayed/neutered. Exempts show and hunting dogs, research, law enforcement, search/rescue, service dogs, dogs/cats too old or sick. Breeders have to have permits, but allows one dog litter for one year.
Next Hearing: Senate Local Government. Maybe April.
Write: Senator Gloria Negrete-McCloud, Chairwoman. Tell her that pet overpopulation costs cities/counties millions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of animal lives.

AB 2098 by Assemblyman Paul Krekorian re: Downed Animals. SUPPORT.
Strengthens the existing law prohibiting auctions and state inspected slaughterhouses from accepting or dragging downed animals.

AB 2233 by Assemblyman Bill Maze re: Dogs in Cars.
Prohibits having a dog, or any animal, in your lap while driving.

AB 2281 by Assemblyman Pedro Nava re: Dog Fighting. SUPPORT.
Strengthens existing penalty for attending a dog fight from a misdemeanor to a felony.

AB 2291 by Assemblyman Tony Mendoza re: Spay/Neuter. SUPPORT.
Adds a check off on state income tax forms to finance low cost spay/neuter programs.

AB 2602 by Assemblyman Cameron Smyth re: Hunting. SUPPORT.
Declares the intention of the Legislature to prohibit schools from funding or supporting the hunting or trapping of wildlife.

AB 2785 by Assemblyman Ira Ruskin re: Wildlife Corridors. SUPPORT.
Requires the Wildlife Conservation Board to designate and protect wildlife corridors. AB 828 of 2007 on the same subject was vetoed.

AB 2911 by Assemblywoman Lois Wolk re: Oil Spills. SUPPORT.
Among many provisions, strengthens protection against oil spills (as does AB 1806 and AB 2912, not listed in this alert) and provides for the better use of volunteers to rehabilitate wildlife.
Hearing: Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife. No date set.
Write: Assemblywoman Lois Wolk, Chairwoman. Thank her for introducing AB 2911. Wildlife rehabilitation is dependent on the volunteers to act quickly in emergencies.

SB 685 by Senator Leland Yee re: Pet Trusts. SUPPORT.
Strengthens pet trusts for animals in wills to provide for their care and provide oversight of the money. Mandates care for animals for their lifetime even if over 21 years, such as parrots and horses.
Next Hearing: Assembly Judiciary. No date set.
Write: Assemblyman Dave Jones, Chairman. Tell him animals deserve the care and protection their people provided for them in their wills.

SB 1121 by Senator Carole Migden re: Cloned Animals. SUPPORT.
Requires animal products from cloned animals be labeled. SB 63 of 2007 on the same subject was vetoed.
Next Hearing: Senate Health. No date set.
Write: Senator Sheila Kuehl, Chairwoman. Tell her that consumers/public have a right to know the origins of animals in the agriculture industry.

State Budget re: Fish and Game Wardens, Shelter Mandates. OPPOSE.
Among many cutbacks, the budget reduces the number of Fish & Game wardens. Also, the State Analyst has recommended that the unfunded state mandates (longer holding periods, shelter vet care) of the Hayden law be removed which have already cost the State well over $100 million.
Write: Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Tell him our wildlife is dependent on the enforcement of laws against poaching and protection of habitat. Wardens are already understaffed and underpaid. Also, tell him that animals in shelters need veterinary care and the opportunity to be reclaimed or adopted.

INITIATIVES

“California Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act.” Mandates pregnant pigs, veal calves, and egg laying birds (chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, guinea fowl) have room to stand up, turn around, lie down and extend their limbs. Does not include dairy calves who replace dairy cows. Over 600,000 signatures have been gathered and the initiative will be on the November 2008 ballot. Info: http://www.humanecalifornia.org

“California Farm Animal Protection Act” (07-0058). Put in by the agriculture industry to counteract the Calif. Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act. Mandates compliance with industry standards which are much lower than those in the California Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act. It has not yet qualified for the ballot.

Sponsored by opponents of AB 1634 initiatives 07-0056, 07-0057, 07-0059, 07-0060, 07-0062, 07-0063 have been submitted to prevent any future legislation to require spay/neuter or micro-chipping. Declares animals are property under the Constitution. They have not yet qualified for the ballot.

Looks like it’s going to be a VERY interesting year of squabbling in Sacramento. /Gary

Posted on Tuesday, March 4th, 2008
Under: Animal Laws, Animal protection legislation | 9 Comments »

Will your pet(s) be cared for when you die?

SB 685, the Pet Trust Bill, will make pet trusts valid and enforceable in California

San Francisco SPCA president Jan McHugh-Smith hails the state Senate Judiciary Committee’s unanimous passage of SB 685, The Pet Trust Bill, on Jan. 15.

“The eventual passage of this bill will bring California into line with the majority of other states which already have enforceable pet trust laws,” McHugh-Smith noted. “It will also bring great peace of mind to pet guardians who wish to ensure continuing care for their companion animals should they predecease them.”

The Pet Trust Bill is sponsored by the SF/SPCA and carried by Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco/San Mateo). The bill is also supported by the Humane Society of the United States, WildCare, The Marin Humane Society, the San Francisco Dog Owners Group (SFDOG), and other advocacy groups.

A legal pet trust protects companion animals and ensures that they receive the continuing care for which their owner/guardians planned. Currently, although California has recognized pet trusts for many years, these are only “honorary” trusts with no enforcement capability. SB 685 will make pet trust law consistent with other trust law by requiring trustees to carry out trust instructions regarding pets, and by incorporating oversight to guarantee performance.

SB 685 must now be heard and passed by the State Senate by Feb. 25. It will next be heard in the Assembly Judiciary Committee before moving into the Assembly for passage. The bill will then go to the Governor for consideration to be signed into law.

About time! /Gary

Posted on Wednesday, January 23rd, 2008
Under: Animal Laws, Animal protection legislation, pet trusts, Pets | No Comments »

Roundup of new California animal laws for 2007

These new animal laws were passed, or vetoed, or may have another shot in 2008.

2007 CALIFORNIA ANIMAL LEGISLATION — FINAL EDITION
The Legislature has adjourned until January 2008. The next Legislative meeting is November 12, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Room 113, Capitol Bldg., Sacramento. Agenda: 2007 Bills and 2008 Possible Legislation. All animal advocates are welcome.

THESE BILLS WERE PASSED AND BECAME LAW THIS YEAR:
** AB 222 by Assemblyman Bill Emmerson re: Undomesticated Burros.
Authorizes the capture, removal, and relocation of undomesticated burros if the burros are at risk of injury from traffic or insufficient habitat. Allows euthanasia if injured.

** AB 450 by Assemblywoman Audra Strickland re: Wildlife in Captivity.
Delays the already passed deadline of 2007 to 2009 for the Fish and Game Dept. to implement a new inspection program for wild animal facilities. Veterinarians paid by the permittees sign off on inspections, a conflict of interest. AB 450 was put into AB 1729.

** AB 670 by Assemblyman Tod Spitzer re: Dog Bites.
Requires an owner whose dog bites (broken the skin) anyone to provide info. (name, address, etc.) to the person bitten.

** AB 821 by Assemblyman Pedro Nava re: Hunting with Lead Shot. Support.
Enacts the Condor Preservation Act to prohibit lead shot within current and historical condor habitat when hunting big game and coyotes.

** AB 1347 by Assemblywoman Anna Caballero re: Pet Shops.
Sets some minimum standards for pet shops on space, vet care, and euthanasia. Sponsored by the pet industry, it provides warnings before infractions can be issued.

** AB 1614 by Assemblywoman Audra Stickland re: Rodeos. Support.
Lowers the definition of rodeo from four events to three to cover Mexican style “charreadas.” Requires a vet, or vet on call, to treat animal injuries, report injuries to the Vet Med. Bd., provide a conveyance for injured animals, and bans electric prods.

** AB 1729 by Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife re: Wildlife.
An omnibus bill amending the Fish and Game Code. Successfully amended to remove sections that would have allowed fur trapping of red fox, pigeon shoots, bounties, and removing a holding period for captured exotic animals. It exempts people trapping gophers, moles, mice, rats and voles from having to get Fish and Game trapping licenses.

** SB 77 re: California Budget.
$1,495,000 (reduced from $10 million, to $3 million, then reduced by half by the Governor) to pay for warden overtime pay. It will not be spent on hiring additional badly needed wardens.
An as yet undetermined amount will be spent ($121 million as of 2006) to reimburse cities and counties for state mandated costs associated with SB 1785 (1997) requiring additional holding times and vet care in animal control shelters.

** SB 353 by Senator Sheila Kuehl re: Restraint Orders. Support.
Authorizes the court to add animals to restraint orders to protect them from possible harm from domestic abuse.

** SB 880 by Senator Ron Calderon re: Kangaroos. Oppose.
Sponsored by Adidas, removes the protection, since 1970, of kangaroos by allowing the importation of their skins (used for athletic shoes) and meat (possibly pet and/or livestock food) into California as long as the kill quota is not raised in Australia.

** SCR 9 by Senator Darrell Steinberg re: Spay Day 2007. Support.
Declares February 27, 2007 as Spay Day 2007 to encourage spaying and neutering of dogs and cats and the participation of veterinarians to help shelters and rescue groups. Spay Day resolutions are passed every year.

** Assemblywoman Patty Berg Resolution re: Marjorie Davis. Support.
Honors Marjorie Davis of Fawn Rescue for her decades of work rehabilitating fawns.

** Fish and Game Commission re: Judd Hanna. Oppose.
Commissioner Judd Hanna, recently appointed to the Commission, resigned under pressure from the Schwarzenegger administration, 34 Republican legislators, and the gun/hunting lobby because of his advocacy to ban lead shot.

THESE BILLS WERE VETOED THIS YEAR
** AB 449 by Assemblywoman Audra Strickland re: Trapping.
Would have required licensed trappers to follow Appendix 2 of the American Veterinary Medical Assn. guidelines if animals are killed. Allows gunshot only if other methods are not available.

** AB 828 by Assemblyman Ira Ruskin re: Wildlife Corridors. Support.
Would have required the Wildlife Conservation Board to determine what areas are most essential as wildlife corridors and utilize the California Comprehensive Wildlife Action Plan to protect those corridors.

** AB 1477 by Assemblywoman Nell Soto re: Trapping. Support.
Would have required licensed trappers to have continuing education courses, release non-target animals, take injured/sick non target animals to a vet, animal control, or wildlife rehabilitation facility, and inform their clients of non lethal control options.

** SB 63 by Senator Carole Migden re: Cloned Farm Animals. Support.
Would have required labeling of cloned farm animal products.

THESE BILLS BECAME INACTIVE THIS YEAR
The following bills failed to get enough votes or did not go to a vote because they were withdrawn by the legislator. They can be brought up again in 2008.

** AB 64 by Assemblywoman Patty Berg re: Emergencies. Support.
Allows licensed vets and vet techs from out of state to practice here during disasters.

** AB 564 by Assemblyman Mervyn Dymally re: Pigs. Support.
Prohibits pregnant pigs from being confined in gestation crates where they cannot turn around or extend their limbs. AB 564 was amended to an unrelated subject.

** AB 576 by Assemblywoman Wilmer Carter re: State Park/Dairy Farm. Support.
Prohibits a 16,000 cow dairy farm from being built next to the Allensworth State Park.

** AB 667 by Assemblyman Cameron Smyth re: Police Dogs and Horses. Support.
Increases the penalty for injuring a police horse or police dog.

** AB 777 by Assemblyman Lloyd Levine re: Elephants. Support.
Prohibits bullhooks and chaining. Mandates enrichments, soft flooring, pools and exercise if capital funds are expended.

** AB 815 by Assemblyman Tom Berryhill re: Hunting/Fishing. Oppose.
Prohibits any city/county from enacting an ordinance that affects hunting or fishing.

** AB 912 by Assemblywoman Nicole Parra re: Hunting. Oppose.
Creates a mentored hunting program that allows anyone to hunt without a license for a year if accompanied by qualified mentor.

** AB 939 by Assemblywoman Nell Soto re: Teachers. Support.
Prohibits hiring of teachers convicted of cruelty to animals. AB 939 was amended to an unrelated subject.

** AB 1100 by Assemblyman Ira Ruskin re: Cloned Farm Animals. Support.
Requires labeling of cloned farm animal products unless preempted by federal law.

** AB 1016 by Assemblyman George Plecia re: Race Horses. Oppose.
Allows boarding/training facilities to sell losing race horses with unpaid bills without going through the court.

** AB 1634 by Assemblyman Lloyd Levine re: Spay/Neuter. Support.
Requires six month old dogs/cats to be spayed/neutered. Exempts show and hunting dogs, research, law enforcement, search/rescue, service dogs, dogs/cats too old or sick. Breeders have to have permits, but allows one dog litter for one year.

** SB 863 by Senator Leland Yee re: Horse Racing.
Prohibits more than three of the seven member Horse Racing Board to be owners of race horses. Requires Board to pass regulations on conflicts of interest and ethics.

INITIATIVES
** “California Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act”. Mandates pregnant pigs, veal calves, and egg laying birds (chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, guinea fowl) have room to stand up, turn around, lie down and extend their limbs. Does not include dairy calves who replace dairy cows. 600,000 signatures must be gathered from October 2007 through February 2008. Info: http://www.humanecalifornia.org

** “California Farm Animal Protection Act” (07-0058). Put in by the agriculture industry to counteract the Calif. Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act. Mandates compliance with industry standards.

** Sponsored by Pet PAC (not Paw PAC) (07-0056, 07-0057, 07-0059, 07-0060, 07-0062, 07-0063) have been submitted to prevent any future legislation to require spay/neuter or micro-chipping. These initiatives are an opposition response to AB 1634.

YOU CAN READ OR PRINT OUT COPIES OF ALL BILLS AT:
http://www.leginfo.ca.gov

THE ABOVE LIST WAS COMPILED BY:
Virginia Handley, Paw PAC, P.O. Box 475012, San Francisco, CA 94147, 415-646-0622; http://www.pawpac.org

See the Paw PAC website for the 2006 Voting Chart. The 2007 Voting Chart is currently being compiled.

THANKS, VIRGINIA!
Let’s hear a big round of applause for Virginia Handley for pulling this information all together so we can see what’s going in. /Gary

Posted on Friday, October 19th, 2007
Under: Animal protection legislation | No Comments »

California Anti-Cruelty Measure collecting signatures

It’s way past time to stop cruelty to 20 million factory farming animals.
This week, a broad coalition, including animal protection groups, veterinarians, environmentalists, and food safety advocates, begins collecting signatures to put an anti-cruelty initiative on the California ballot for November 2008.

Californians for Humane Farms will collect more than 650,000 signatures to place the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act on the general election ballot. The measure will help prevent cruelty to nearly 20 million animals confined in industrial factory farms in California, as well as protect California’s environment.

The Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act provides basic protections requiring that animals be able to turn around and extend their limbs. It will prevent the use of inhumane factory farming practices such as keeping animals confined in small crates or cages — specifically, veal crates for calves, battery cages for egg-laying hens, and gestation crates for breeding pigs.

“It is exceedingly cruel to confine animals in cages so small they can’t turn around and extend their limbs,” stated Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States. “California citizens can help prevent farm animal cruelty by volunteering to gather signatures to put this historic initiative on the ballot.”

The Humane Society of the United States and Farm Sanctuary are two of the groups sponsoring the initiative. The two organizations led a successful ballot initiative in Florida in 2002 which banned gestation crates for breeding pigs (55%-45%) and in Arizona in 2006 which banned crates for breeding pigs and veal calves (62%-38%). In 2007, the Oregon legislature banned gestation crates.

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW:
** Veal crates are narrow wooden enclosures that prevent calves from turning around or lying down comfortably. The calves are typically chained by their necks and suffer immensely.

** California factory farms confine approximately 19 million hens per year in barren battery cages that are so small, the birds can’t even spread their wings. Each bird has less space than a single sheet of paper on which to live.
I remember writing a story about an egg farm in Gilroy, Calif., a couple of years ago. I was shocked when I entered a warehouse bigger than a couple of football fields. The stench was incredible. It was almost pitch black except for a few bare bulbs here and there so employees could see enough to remove dead hens from cages and toss them on the floor. I tripped over those dead bodies as I moved throughout the building.
Each tiny cage was stuffed with 6-8 hens, jammed in together so tight they were piled on top of each other. The top chickens were white. The ones on the bottom were black because they were covered with chicken poop from the hens on top. The chickens couldn’t move except to poop and lay eggs and barely stick their heads through the sides of the wire cages to peck at food as it passed by on a conveyor belt. It was horrible.
Underneath the cages another moving conveyor belt caught the eggs that fell from each cage and transported them to another room where they were prepared for delivery to local markets … and your refrigerator.
Needless to say, I’m definitely adding my signature to put this anti-cruelty initiative on the ballot.

** During their four-month pregnancies, nearly 20,000 female breeding pigs in California are confined in barren gestation crates—individual metal enclosures only 2 feet wide. The crates are so small, the animals cannot even turn around.

** The measure will prevent out-of-state factory farm operators from setting up shop in our state with veal crates, battery cages and gestation crates.

** Confining animals in crates or cages results in a high density of animals in industrial factory farms, leading to more animal waste and pollution of air and water, as well as risk of disease transmission such as salmonella.

MORE ABOUT:
The Humane Society of the United States: http://www.hsus.org

Farm Sanctuary: http://www.farmsanctuary.org

PLEASE:
Sign a petition to put this initiative on the ballot when you have a chance. Thanks. /Gary

Posted on Tuesday, October 2nd, 2007
Under: Animal protection legislation | No Comments »