TheDogPlace > PAWS Index >> PAWS - An AKC Spin or Education?




When POLITICS become PROJECTS, we get RESULTS.  It was AKC's support of PAWS that made it a Project.   You will now decide the future of the AKC and of the purebred dog.  PAWS has divided the fancy more than ever before.  As a voting member of a member club YOU have the power to bring about the right  RESULT.  And remember, the uninformed owner thinks PAWS is a good thing so Send THIS PAGE To Everyone!

PAWS - AKC Spin or Education?


The following excerpts are from published statements by PAWS proponents. AKC and HSUS have done a great job of getting their message out. There isn’t an active show breeder, handler or judge who has not been exposed to the pro-paws position.
Conversely, due to pressure from the “Yes-sirs” and impossibility of straddling a hot-wired fence, the “Ag-iners” have difficulty getting accurate information. Therefore, depending on where you stand at the moment, you will either resent or forgive us for not including pro-PAWS information here.
In no order of date or importance….. links are live and open in a window so you won’t lose your place. Plan to spend some time and explore freely, including links below.

AKC Board News and Chairman’s Reports contain an interesting void of information on PAWS until June 2005, several months after it failed to fly for Delegates and the fancy.  In June Chairman Menaker said
“both conditions must be met (7 litters, sell 25 or more dogs) before a breeder comes before the USDA; thus, if you produce less than seven litters, your are not subject to regulation, even if you sell many more than 25 dogs. Similarly, if you sell fewer than 25 dogs, you can have in excess of six litters and not be covered.”
That statement, attributed directly to PA Senator Santorum, is quoted repeatedly in other articles, on the AKC website is increasingly cited by the average Yes-sir as assurance that most of us will not be USDA regulated. One can not blame or find fault with the CEO or other AKC spokespersons who quote what the Senator said. But it should be noted that politicians have long been credited with twisting facts, misrepresenting their positions depending on whom they are addressing and in general, are said to be the world’s greatest orators and prevaricators.
Can we hold the Senator to what he said? Can you hold a greased pig with one hand? As one AKC spokesperson says, the amendment is the
“broad form of the law” but it is the “regulations that will determine its final form.”  This is true so it could get worse in committee!
On the other side of the aisle, the Ag-iners cite attorney/DPCA Board, Jeff Helsdon's 55 page Legal Opinion. Mr. Helsdon is a highly respected member of the fancy, and a principal in a large nationally-known law practice. Among his fields of expertise are commercial, corporate, and business law. He clearly and legally refutes all such claims that would have us believe we can have our cake and eat it too.
Back to the Chairman’s Report, Mr. Menaker also states
“the bill will only apply to less than four percent of our customers who register litters, the majority of whom are already subject to USDA regulations.” Is that statement based on previously published records? If so, when were such figures generated?  If true, “we” are less than 4% of AKC’s business, which gives the show breeder no clout whatsoever in AKC’s business model.

Forgive this editor for nit-picking words but that’s what I do. Like fleeting expressions or body language that good psychologists note, the way sentences are framed can be more revealing than what they actually say. For example, in the same Report, Mr. Menaker states (emphasis added).
“It (PAWS) is an example of the proactive spirit that the AKC has embraced in recent years and which I am intent on pursuing as I believe our actions in matters such as these are fundamental to the future health of our organization and to our dogs.” Well said.

Dr. Jim Holt, AKC’s Federal Legislative Liaison, has said a lot about PAWS. Some notable observations he has made have to do with refuting the victory in the U.S. Court Of Appeals which refused to hear the Doris Day Animal League (DDAL) appeal seeking overturn of the lower court ruling against their case. He has said that the court’s decision does not protect show or hobby breeders, to wit
“nothing could be further from the truth. The USDA could decide to start regulating every person who sells dogs tomorrow…”

In fact, many experts feel certain that USDA would prefer not to regulate us at all. It has already made that choice and defended it in court. As one pundit put it “USDA has enough trouble finding the mad cows.” USDA has its budgetary hands full and would just as soon we all go away and let it do the job it is mandated to do!
Dr. Holt also explains “Since legislation trumps regulation, PAWS actually protects hobby and show breeders” from reinterpretation of the previous case. That is however, diametrically opposed to assurances this reporter was given by an AKC spokesperson who explained that we should not worry about the wording of the amendment because it is just a “broad law” and the “regulations will be written later and that they would define what it does and does not mean. That is true, laws do not “take effect” without implementing regulations.
In summary, do not relax your guard and do not cease writing and FAXing your local and state representatives.
Legislators are back in session early, consumed with haggling over how best to help Katrina Victims and handle the aftermath of recriminations and blame-shifting. This is Friday, Day Four of the horror and as we predicted last week, it is worse and will continue to get worse. Martial Law should have been a “shoot to kill” on Day Two.
Let us not be equally as complacent. The future of our nation is uncertain at this moment but we can’t really do anything about that. We can do something about our Rights as given by the Creator and guaranteed under the Constitution but if we sit waiting for someone else to help us; if we don’t bother to grab a loaf of bread and a jug of water when we have hours to prepare, we have no one to blame but ourselves. Those poor people couldn’t stop the water and we can’t stop the spin, but if we are strong, we can stop PAWS or control what is to follow.

It is all about knowing and understanding the big picture, not about being near-sighted. We have been thanked for taking the risk of exposing more than one side of an issue and our writers and contributors are gratified. But if YOU fail to do your part, to learn and examine issues from all sides, we have all failed. #1110


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