AVMA targets high-volume breeders before U.S. Senate

AVMA targets high-volume breeders before U.S. Senate

Dec 01, 2005

WASHINGTON — The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) turned up the political chatter against high-volume breeders in testimony before the U.S. Senate.

At presstime, Dr. Henry Childers, president of the AVMA, made an impassioned stand against unscrupulous breeders before the U.S. Senate's Subcommittee on Research, Nutrition and General Legislation supporting the Pet Animal Welfare Statute (PAWS) amending the Animal Welfare Act.

"Unfortunately, veterinarians are regularly confronted with pets that suffer the ill effects of irresponsible breeding and inappropriate transport over long distances," Childers says in his testimony on Capitol Hill. "Animal suffering compounds human suffering when heartache and financial burdens are thrust upon pet owners who have purchased these unfortunate animals."

Dr. Henry Childers
AVMA wants Congress to insert more regulatory teeth in the Animal Welfare Act to help the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) as the key watchdog for animal welfare.

"Large-scale puppy and kitten dealers who escape regulation under the current Animal Welfare Act are a significant source of these problems," Childers says. "Over-breeding, inbreeding, inadequate veterinary care, poor-quality food and shelter, overcrowding, poor socialization and stress due to prolonged transport are the hallmarks of these operations. These operations escape regulation because they sell directly to the public, either from their facilities or via the Internet, and are therefore classified as 'retail pet stores.' "

Childers adds, "The American Veterinary Medical Association believes this must be corrected. Congress has the power to do that."