Rep. Pridemore changes his tune on puppy mill legislation

Rep. Pridemore changes his tune on puppy mill legislation

By Annie Scholz. CREATED Jul 27, 2011

HARTFORD - Despite legislation in 2009 to crackdown on puppy mills, a new proposal would ease restrictions on dog breeders. The proposal comes from one of the original co-sponsors of the bill, and now Representative Donald Pridemore of Hartford says the rules went too far.

The legislation in place now limits the number of dogs breeders can sell in the state to 25 per year, without regulation.

At the time it became law, it had animal rights advocates, like Angela Speed with the Wisconsin Humane Society, cheering.

"After closing down Puppy Haven Kennels this summer and saving over 1,600 dogs, this has become near and dear to our hearts."

Now, Representative Pridemore is changing his tune. "I want to go after the puppy mills, not the hobby breeders." His proposal would quadruple the number of dogs breeders can sell in a year from 25 to 100. He argues it still prevents puppy mills, and protects what he calls "hobby breeders," people whose dogs may have a litter or two in their homes.

Yes, money is a motivator. Pridemore says he doesn't want puppy mills to profit, but smaller breeders shouldn't be punished with the same fees and requirements. He maintains, raising the number won't raise the risk. "Nobody can make a living off breeding 100 dogs in a year." He also says this proposal is just in the initial stages and may change if the public objects.

If you want to let Representative Pridemore know how you feel about it, you can email him at  Rep.Pridemore@legis.wisconsin.gov