Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Michigan Takes First Set Of Votes To Ban Scientific Experiments On Shelter Dogs & Cats

American Humane Legislation Banning Shelter Animal Seizure Passes Michigan State House

American Humane is encouraged that the proposed state legislation it created to stop shelter dogs and cats from being seized by Class B dealers for scientific experiments has passed the Michigan House of Representatives.

"One can only imagine the horror of having your family pet wind up in a shelter and then be sold to a Class B dealer for scientific experiments before it can be picked up or find a new home," said Allie Phillips, a former prosecutor who authored the legislation in her role as American Humane's vice president of strategic initiatives. "This is a heartbreaking and cruel practice that must be stopped."

By a vote of 78-20, Michigan's House of Representatives passed House Bill 4663 (Koda's Law), which, if approved also by the Senate, would effectively end the 30-year practice of pet dealers taking shelter dogs and cats for sale to research facilities. Under current law, Class B dealers (named after their type of U.S. Department of Agriculture license) engage in the practice of providing shelter animals around the nation to research laboratories for experimentation. There are currently nine Class B dealers that broker live animals for experimentation in the United States, with three being located in Michigan.

The landmark legislation was sponsored by State Rep. John Espinoza (D-Croswell) and authored by American Humane, the nation's historic voice of advocacy and awareness for the protection of children and animals. Founded in 1877, Denver-based American Humane provides public policy leadership, education and direct action incorporating a vast network of agencies, academic institutions, businesses and individual Americans to help protect children and animals from abuse and neglect.

Previous efforts in Michigan to ban Class B dealers have gone county by county, and there are currently two remaining shelters in the state that practice pound seizure.

The bill will now move to the Michigan Senate for consideration.

For more information on this and other issues relating to the protection of children and animals, please visit American Humane at

About American Humane

Founded in 1877, the Denver-based American Humane Association is the only national organization dedicated to protecting both children and animals from abuse and neglect through public policy, education and services reaching a wide network of organizations and advocates. Programs include raising awareness about The Link® between violence to people and violence to animals, as well as the benefits derived from the human-animal bond. The organization is also known for "No Animals Were Harmed,"® the end-credit disclaimer seen on film and TV productions. American Humane® Certified is the nation's largest and most highly regarded independent standards and certification program for farm animal welfare. American Humane meets the strong, comprehensive standards of the Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance and has earned the Independent Charities of America's "Best in America" Seal of Approval. Learn more at


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