A Publication of the AKC Government Relations Department — December 2015

The AKC Government Relations team wishes you a joyous holiday season and a happy, prosperous and peaceful new year.

We send our sincere thanks to everyone who wrote a letter, sent an email, made a call, presented testimony, served on a committee, staffed a booth, met with a lawmaker, made a donation, and worked to educate legislators and the public about issues that affect dogs and dog owners.

Your advocacy and action make a difference for the dogs we love.

Orange County Commissioner Scott Boyd at Meet the Breeds in Orlando, Florida.

Florida legislators met beautiful dogs, chatted with dedicated dog owners, and shared the excitement of the 2015 American Kennel Club/Eukanuba National Championship (AENC) this month in Orlando, Florida. U.S. Congressman Alan Grayson (FL-9) and Orange County Commissioners S. Scott Boyd and Pete Clarke were among the lawmakers who visited the event on December 13-14.

Congressman Grayson and Dr. Dena Minning got a behind-the-scenes look at Sunday night’s group and Best In Show competition. Grayson went center stage at the finale to present the Best In Show trophy to handler Kent Boyles and winning German Shepherd Dog GCH CH Lockenhaus' Rumor Has It V Kenlyn.

2015 Bebout Award honoree, Dr. Arnold L. Goldman of the Connecticut Federation of Dog Clubs and Responsible Dog Owners.

The American Kennel Club is pleased to announce that Dr. Arnold L. Goldman, DVM, MPH and the Connecticut Federation of Dog Clubs and Responsible Dog Owners have been named winners of the 2015 Bebout Memorial Award for Leadership in Canine Legislation.

Together with the Connecticut Federation, of which he is a trustee, Dr. Goldman and the federation have demonstrated innovative leadership in educating Connecticut residents about responsible dog ownership, pet health, animal welfare, public health issues, crisis planning, and emergency response for animals.


Would you lie to get a handicapped parking placard? Would you fake an injury that required the use of a wheelchair to obtain special services? Would you feign a life-threatening illness to qualify for a Make-A-Wish trip?

Most people would never do these things because they harm those who are truly disabled and need special assistance. However, it appears that many people do not feel the same way when it comes to service dogs. Sales of fake service dog vests, patches, and backpacks have skyrocketed in recent years, allowing owners who outfit their pet with this gear to enter restaurants, ride with a dog in an airplane cabin, or claim other special accommodations intended for people with disabilities. This behavior is just as dishonest and damaging as the examples above.

Legislative Information and Updates

Each year, thousands of dog-related laws and regulations are proposed at the federal, state, and local levels. To date this year, AKC GR has been monitoring more than 1,700 measures at the state, local and federal levels that could impact dog owners. Congress, eight state legislatures and the District of Columbia are currently in regular session. Bills have been prefiled for the 2016 session in 21 states.

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.

Visit us at AKC.org


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