Condoning or Confronting Cruelty?

Urge Congress to Protect Our Pets

Thanks to the efforts of AAVS, our supporters, and many other advocates, the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA) has filed a formal complaint against random source Class B dealer R&R Research for illegally obtaining animals. While this is certainly welcome news, we must continue to push for an end to random source Class B dealers, animal brokers who obtain shelter dogs and cats, many of whom are former pets, to sell to research and education facilities. But we need your help!

In 2011, the Pet Safety and Protection Act (H.R. 2256), legislation that would ban random source Class B dealers, was reintroduced to Congress by Representatives Mike Doyle (D-PA) and Chris Smith (R-NJ). “Class B dealers have racked up an atrocious record of illegal activity and cruelty to animals,” stated Representative Doyle. “Allowing this failed program to continue is simply unacceptable.”

Four of seven currently licensed random source Class B dealers are under investigation for Animal Welfare Act (AWA) violations, such as the illegal acquisition of animals, improper record keeping, and failure to provide proper veterinary care. Additionally, AAVS was disappointed to discover that another random source Class B dealer, Robert Perry, has been cited three times for illegally acquiring animals in violation of the Protection of Pets section of the AWA. The law clearly calls for the license of any random source dealer violating this section three or more times to be revoked.

Furthermore, the Congressmen have also reported that USDA spends hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars regulating Class B dealers, yet it acknowledges that it cannot adequately ensure that dogs and cats are not illegally obtained and sold to laboratories. Representative Smith commented, “Class B dealers have routinely failed to meet basic Animal Welfare Act standards and there is no sign they will ever improve.”

The Government Accountability Office released a report in 2010 highlighting USDA’s failure to regulate Class B dealers adequately to ensure that they operate within the law. Despite this, random source dealers continue to reap huge profits from their unscrupulous business dealings. Although their numbers are slowly diminishing, the Pet Safety and Protection Act (H.R. 2256) would ban all random source Class B dealers for good. A decade ago, there were over 100 random source dealers, but today there are only seven in operation. Moreover, the National Academies’ Institute for Animal Research conducted a study, finding that random source Class B dealers are not necessary players in federally-funded research. Passage of the Pet Safety and Protection Act will help save former pet dogs and cats from life in laboratories.

Please contact your U.S. Representative and ask him or her to spare America’s dogs and cats from a life in research laboratories by supporting the Pet Safety and Protection Act (H.R. 2256), legislation that would ban random source Class B animal dealers.

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Ending the Use of Animals in Science