Conditions in commercial dog kennels across Pennsylvania are slated for a substantial improvement now that the state has finalized a new set of standards that will take effect July 1, 2011, Agriculture Secretary Russell C. Redding said yesterday.
The final-form regulations, which were published in the PA Bulletin on Nov. 27, improve standards for ventilation, humidity, lighting and flooring in commercial kennels. The regulations were approved by the Office of Attorney General earlier this month.
Commercial kennels are businesses that breed dogs and either sell dogs to dealers or pet stores, or sell more than 60 dogs during a year. “These regulations raise the standards of care for dogs in commercial kennels in Pennsylvania,” said Redding. “Commercial kennel owners now have clear guidance on how to comply with the law, helping to ensure that the pets Pennsylvanians purchase or adopt are healthy.”
The regulations require kennels to have adequate ventilation, reduce excessive humidity levels, and monitor temperatures continuously. They also require all commercial kennel operators to consult with a professional engineer to certify their ventilation systems comply with the law. Dogs must also be monitored for heat-related stress, and veterinarians must be consulted if temperatures become excessive.
The new rules complement and enhance the improved dog law Governor Edward G. Rendell signed in October 2008, which puts in place some of the most stringent protections for “man’s best friend.” That law, Act 119, provides protections well beyond those that breeding dogs had in the past. It doubled the minimum floor space for dogs, required exercise that is at least as good as unfettered access to an exercise area twice the size of the primary enclosure, and required veterinary examinations for each dog twice per year.
For more information about the Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement or to view kennel inspection reports, visit www.agriculture.state.pa.us, click on “Bureaus, Commissions & Councils,” and select “Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement.” Tips about unsatisfactory or illegal kennels can be reported confidentially by using the department’s online complaint form, or by calling 1-877-DOG-TIP1