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Public Statements

Issue Position: Regulating Puppy Mills

Issue Position

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It is estimated that 2 million to 4 million puppy mill puppies are sold each year in the United States. Facilities that breed dogs for commercial resale are required to be licensed and inspected under the federal Animal Welfare Act (AWA), but a loophole in the law allows thousands of puppy mills to sell directly to the public and go unchecked from any federal oversight. Due to improper care and over-crowded conditions, their puppies are often ill, leaving unsuspecting consumers with sick, sometimes dying puppies, expensive vet bills and very unhappy children. Meanwhile, the breeding dogs at these facilities often spend their entire lives in constant confinement and deprivation. I have cosponsored the Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety (PUPS) Act, H.R. 835, to close this loophole in the Animal Welfare Act that allows thousands of large, commercial breeders to sell puppies over the Internet and escape licensing and regulation. Many of the "puppy-mill" dogs are typically forced to live their entire lives in small cages with no opportunity for exercise or social contact. The PUPS act would require that dogs used for breeding be allowed to exercise outside their primary enclosures every day. I will continue to advocate for this bill, which has been referred to the


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