Legislative Action Center

AKC GR Releases Two New ‘Key Issues’ Web Resources – Detection Dogs and Pet Imports
June 17, 2020 by AKC Government Relations

The COVID-19 global pandemic has underscored the importance of assuring that animals imported into the U.S. are healthy and free of contagious disease; and that the U.S. has a reliable source of high-quality, American-bred and -raised working and detection dogs to protect national and public security.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) is pleased to announce the release of two new key issues pages that address these two distinct and crucial issues: Working and Detection Dogs and Pet Imports: Protecting Pet & Public Health. The pages are in the AKC’s Government Relations Legislative Action Center, www.akcgr.org.

AKC Government Relations’ (GR) Key Issues pages are a one-stop resource for information on major canine policy issues that AKC GR is tracking. They contain issue overviews, analyses, information about AKC efforts on the issue, links to alerts, testimony, articles, position statements, model legislation (if available), sample letters, webinars/videos, and other resources.  

Detection Dogs

The supply of explosive detection dogs is both scarce and not secure. Currently, approximately 80 to 90% of this crucial U.S. national security resource are foreign-sourced. Other countries, which also face their own terrorism threats, public health threats, or geopolitical disturbances, are in the market for the same dogs the U.S. seeks, thereby reducing the number of dogs available for U.S. security and public safety.  

More than ever, the U.S. needs to be able to rely on high-quality, American-bred, -raised and -trained explosives detection dogs to protect national and public security. The AKC Detection Dog Task Force (DDTF) works with experts from academia, government/public policy, military, and law enforcement, as well as breeding and training experts, to address the underlying problem: There are not enough dogs to meet the world-wide growing need for explosives detection canines. AKC encourages the breeding and development of explosives detection canines to meet current rigorous industry standards. To assist in this endeavor, the AKC DDTF has launched initiatives in public policy/government relations, networking/raising awareness and breeder/puppy raiser education.

Visit AKC’s Detection Dogs Key Issue page for more information. 

Pet Imports: Protecting Pet & Public Health

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that one million dogs are imported into the U.S. annually. Exponential growth in the import of dogs, particularly from random sources, has resulted in recent incidents of dogs with non-native parasites and zoonotic diseases such as rabies, viral infections, brucellosis, and others, being imported and passed into the general public. The Pet Imports: Protecting Pet & Public Health ‘key issues’ page provides a wealth of background information on the topic, as well as position statements, op eds, and information on what you can do to support the Healthy Dog Importation Act of 2020, which will help protect pet and public health by ensuring that all dogs entering the U.S. are healthy and free of contagious disease.   

Visit the Pet Imports page for more information. 

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