In an effort to stop experimentation on illegally acquired dogs and cats, Senator Daniel Akaka (D-AK) and Representative Mike Doyle (D-PA) are again sponsoring the Pet Safety and Protection Act. The measure, which we expect will be reintroduced as we go to press, will prohibit the sale of dogs and cats by Class B dealers, individuals who are notorious for their failure to comply with the minimum requirements under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA). The bill would close a loophole in the AWA that permits anyone who claims to have bred and raised a dog or cat to sell the animal for experimentation—an enforcement nightmare for the US Department of Agriculture as it is virtually impossible to prove. Given that the May 29 National Academy of Sciences report found that “Class B dealers are not necessary for supplying dogs and cats for NIH-funded research,” we hope Congress will put a quick end to this illicit trade.
AWI Quarterly Issue