Recently, the National Association of Counties (NACo) held their 2022 Annual Conference in Adams County, Colorado.
Charley Hall, AKC Government Relations Legislative Analyst/Community Outreach Coordinator for the Mid-Atlantic Region, staffed an AKC Government Relations booth to provide information, education, and resources to the more than 2,000 conference attendees from all over the country.
As the number of dog laws proposed at the local levels continue to increase, it’s more important than ever for dog owners to be proactive in developing relationships with local lawmakers.
Throughout the conference, valuable interaction took place with a wide variety of lawmakers, ranging from county officials from Colorado, Michigan, and California to judges from Texas, and regions in between. GR staff answered questions, and discussed issues such as dangerous dogs, irresponsible owners, responsible breeding and rescue practices, the beneficial impact of dog events, and building dog parks.
A conversation with a County Supervisor from Rockingham County, Virginia, resulted in the tabling of onerous breeder/dog owner regulation under consideration, and a new commitment by county lawmakers to work with AKC and local breeders to create reasonable ordinances that benefit the county and responsible dog owners.
AKC GR participates in national policymaker conferences to represent the interests of local clubs and showcase the AKC’s expertise on dogs and canine policy. Government Relations staff emphasize that local club members can be a valuable resource to counties looking to promote responsible dog ownership in their communities. AKC presence at these events also establishes the AKC as a resource to assist communities in navigating demands for dog laws, while also establishing positive and reasonable canine policy that protects dogs and responsible owners.