Supported by THLN, House Bill 1451 was signed into law during last year's legislative session. This law requires that dog and cat breeders who own 11 or more breeding females and sell more than twenty puppies or kittens a year, be licensed and inspected and provide basic standards of care to their animals. This law was celebrated as a major victory for animal welfare agencies and animal lovers alike.
Through our action alert email, we sent out the call for everyone able, to attend the TDLR Commission meeting in Austin March 27. During this meeting, the Commission listened to public testimony from experts in animal welfare and concerned citizens. The Commission held a brief discussion regarding the standards and adopted the final rules for these breeding facilities.
Unfortunately, the word "basic" seems to be all that the Commission cared to hear. Despite the recommendations that animals be provided larger cages, flooring that was at least 50% solid, and cages that were not stacked, the Commission did nothing to boost the federal standards outlined under the Animal Welfare Act. They ignored the advice of their own Advisory Committee. They ignored you and the thousands of public comments they received.
Because of this decision, because the Commission chose to take the "easy" way out, animals living in squalid conditions in these breeding hellholes will continue to suffer. These innocent cats and dogs will continue to live in tiny cramped barren wire cages while being bred until they no longer can produce. Furthermore, they will continue to live in the harrowing conditions that we so hoped the Commission would take the opportunity it was given to improve.
We will not sit quietly. THLN, in conjunction with the ASPCA and the Humane Society of the United States, has issued a press release condemning this decision and expressing our sincere disappointment. All of your helpful actions will not be in vain. We will continue to seek opportunity to change the conditions for these animals. As always, we and the animals continue to need your help and support. If you wish to donate to THLN to help fund our efforts to help these and other animals, please click here.