Agriculture, Animal Groups Announce Deal on Missouri Dog Law
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - Missouri dog breeders would have longer to comply with new regulations under a freshly announced plan to rewrite a voter-approved law. The agreement Monday among agricultural and animal advocacy groups comes only days after the Legislature gave final approval to a bill that would repeal and replace key parts of the dog-breeding law passed last November.
The latest plan still would repeal a voter-approved maximum of 50 breeding dogs per business and still would relax the criminal penalties passed by voters. But it would give existing dog breeders until 2016 to comply with new housing regulations to be written by the state Department of Agriculture. The bill recently passed by lawmakers simply would have repealed many of the voter-approved housing requirements.
Although approved by both the House and Senate, that bill has not yet been delivered to Gov. Jay Nixon. Nixon praised the new agreement Monday as one that "respects the will of the voters, protects dogs and allows responsible breeders to earn a living." Two lawmakers involved in the recently passed legislation also praised the new agreement and said they were ready to support passage of the latest plan.