Individuals who breed more than four females and sell the puppies online, by mail or over the phone, will now encounter the same oversight as other wholesale animal breeders.
The new oversight stems from the USDA inspector general's report in 2010 which revealed deplorable conditions at "puppy mills" across the nation. Dogs kept at these facilities are often confined to small, filthy cages; many never touch their feet to the ground or receive even the most basic of veterinary care.
For the first time, dogs kept at these breeding operations will be subject to inspection by USDA officials. The agency estimates that over 4,600 dog breeders will be impacted by the new rules, along with over 320 cat breeders.
Kevin Shea, with the USDA, has stated that the breeders impacted by the new rules will have to obtain licenses, which should cost $750 or less. Those breeders who are currently ensuring that the animals in their care have adequate housing and veterinary care should not by adversely impacted by the new regulations.
Continue reading: Retail pet store refuses to stop selling puppies, despite new law
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