Withdrawing Support of Colorado’s “Humane Pet Act”

ANNOUNCEMENT: This afternoon lawmakers and The Humane Society of the United States announced they will be making major changes to Colorado’s HB20-1084 The Humane Pet Act, a bill that was intended to address the puppy mill crisis. We feel these changes would have a negative impact on our work moving forward, and could even increase dog and cat sales from pet stores. Because of this, Harley’s Dream is officially withdrawing support from the bill as it would be written with the proposed amendments. We are very disappointed that the bill has deviated so far from its original intent.

Here are the changes to the bill:

1) Various proposed humane housing and breeding requirements would be dropped.

2.) Pet stores can still source from puppy mills in all states, but those facilities would need to meet all of PACFA’s requirements, which are only slightly higher than USDA standards. ***We feel this is highly unenforceable as breeders would likely be allowed to submit affidavits stating they are in compliance rather than be inspected. It would also have a concerning fiscal impact on the state as trying to monitor and enforce it would be intricate and time-consuming, especially across state lines. And sadly, it would do nothing to end puppy mills.

3) In pet stores, each dog and cat for sale would be required to have a placard on their cage stating the name, city, state, and USDA license number of each breeder. ***Although this sounds good on the surface, we believe it is a regulation to make consumers “feel good” about the pet they are purchasing. This exact information is already available to the public, but there is NO public access into the USDA’s breeder information. In addition, the placards on cages could consequently increase pet sales by deceiving the public into believing they are being sourced from humane breeders.

In the end, this bill with the newly proposed amendments would do little if anything to curb puppy mills while simultaneously legitimizing the sale of dogs and cats in pet stores.

Many people may say these are incremental changes. The problem with incremental changes at the state level is that they will prevent a more robust bill from being introduced in future legislative sessions, and lawmakers will be reluctant to make changes to the current bill. It would be a done deal, and sadly this is not a deal we can endorse.

From here, regardless of what happens with this bill, it will be more important than ever to help get pet store ordinances passed on a local level across Colorado and the nation. Will you pledge to help in YOUR city?

Stakeholders may have been consulted on these proposed amendments, but it’s those who have no voice who we represent – the dogs in the puppy mills, and our mission is to end those puppy mills. Harley lived his life with the utmost integrity and Harley’s Dream will always continue to follow this principle. 

16 comments

  1. we are meeting with the MN legislature on 2/5 – I was hoping this would be a great example to bring to the table – sadly the puppy mill dogs will be let down again by this newly amended bill – We will stand with #HarleysDream

  2. What is wrong with people? Do they have no heart or no brain? I can hear Harley shaking his little head with sadness at this watering down of a bill that would have greatly helped so many little dogs. How very sad.. Grrs and no tail wag for this.

  3. Florida is dealing right now with a proposed state law that will prohibit local municipalities from enacting legislation that bans the sale of puppy mill dogs in stores, and it would also repeal existing laws. Our city just passed one last year.

  4. Thank you for staying on top of this legislation. It’s so important to not just indorse a bill and then not notice when changes are made that water down the original intent.

  5. I have FULL confidence in Harley’s dream’s opinion which always coincides with mine. I hate people who put money ahead of the welfare of animals. Breeders need to be eliminated! They should get a real job.

  6. We all need to continue being champions getting rid of puppy mills and informing people how horrible the conditions are for those dogs being held in cages for years just for breeding. People should know that puppies in pet stores all come from puppy mills and they should adopt from a rescue operation not from a pet store. Harley’s legacy should continue, he is the hero for all puppy mill dogs along with Harley’s House of Hope!

  7. I feel for all the animal,why do humans choose money over the welfare of the animals.

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