Taking Command
A Publication of the AKC Government Relations Dept - January 2015
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What’s New from GR
Success in protecting the rights of dog owners and ensuring the well-being of dogs is achieved through the hard work of dedicated owners, breeders, sportsmen, and exhibitors who take action.

Breeders and exhibitors across the country are no longer allowing themselves to be defined in false and derogatory terms. Instead, they are speaking proudly about their dogs, their breeding programs, and their contributions to their communities. They are making themselves heard in the halls of government. They are meeting with their elected officials and presenting true and valid information about dog care, dog ownership, and the value of responsible breeders. They are pointing out the untruths in inaccurate propaganda statements that are used to push for increasingly restrictive and damaging laws that affect dog owners.

Read More »
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2014 Year in Review
The past year was another busy one for AKC Government Relations (GR) and for dog owners throughout the United States. There were many challenges, but there were also many successes as well. Many of the successes and advances made in 2014 can be attributed to outreach by representatives of AKC clubs and federations, owners, breeders and exhibitors who worked to establish relationships with their local, state, and federal lawmakers.

The AKC salutes the dedicated dog lovers and volunteers whose letters, phone calls, educational outreach, and advocacy have made a difference to the future of dogs!

Read More »
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AKC Honors Lawmakers with 2014 Legislator of the Year Awards
The American Kennel Club is pleased to honor members of Congress and state legislators with the 2014 AKC Legislator of the Year Award. Click here to view this year’s honorees. This award recognizes federal and state legislators who promote responsible dog ownership, demonstrate commitment to the well-being of dogs, work to protect the rights of dog owners, exhibitors and breeders, and whose actions advance the mission of the AKC. Awards are presented in late 2014 and early 2015.
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Stay Informed — New Laws Impacting Dog Owners Enacted in 2014
One of the important aspects of being a responsible dog owner or breeder is ensuring that you are in compliance with all dog laws.

Here are some highlights of laws and regulations passed in 2014 that impact dogs, dog owners, breeders, and pet sellers. This is not a complete list and does not include county or local laws enacted in 2014. Please take the time to contact your local government, law enforcement agency or animal control authority to learn about any new laws, regulations, or zoning restrictions in your community.
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More from the AKC Dog Lovers Blog
AKC Dog Lovers, the official blog of the AKC, is a great source of news, stories, and information from the American Kennel Club. Recent blog posts from the AKC Government Relations team are featured below.

AKC GR Resources: Wow, Can I Get a Copy of That?
That was a frequent question by visitors to the AKC Government Relations booth at the 2014 AKC/Eukanuba National Championship in Orlando, Florida.

We’re glad you asked! The AKC Government Relations (GR) department provides a variety of materials on legislative and regulatory issues that affect dogs and dog owners—available right on the AKC website for you to view, download and print. Read more »

This article appeared in the “AKC Dog Lovers” blog on January 16, 2015.
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New in the GR Toolbox:
Updated “Dangerous Dog” Packet

AKC GR is pleased to offer an updated policy/informational packet on Dangerous Dog Legislation. Included are issue analyses, position statements, sample laws, customizable letters to lawmakers, and sample letters to the editor that address dangerous dog laws and breed-specific legislation.  Contact the AKC Government Relations Department at (919) 816-3720 or doglaw@akc.org for order information.

Be sure to visit the GR Toolbox often for the latest materials you can download and print for legislative battles, community and dog-related events, and club meetings to help educate others about the importance of promoting and protecting responsible dog ownership and breeding practices.
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Legislative Information and Updates
Each year, thousands of dog-related laws and regulations are proposed at the federal, state, and local levels. So far this year, AKC GR has been monitoring more than 1,100 measures that could impact dog owners. Congress, 45 state legislatures and the District of Columbia are currently in regular session. Bills for 2015 sessions have been prefiled in Alabama, Florida and Nevada.

Visit the 2015 Legislation Tracking page for the most up-to-date information on state and federal legislation. This site, updated each weekday, provides the latest bill text, status, and links to legislative alerts posted by the AKC. Click on the links below to view highlights of issues that are being tracked by AKC Government Relations:

Federal — issues that may affect all dog owners in the US
State — issues specific to your state.
Local — issues at the city and county levels

Please contact AKC GR at (919) 816-3720 or doglaw@akc.org for more information or to let us know what’s happening in your local community.
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