ASPCA Declares Victory for Texas Dogs with Passage of Puppy Mill Law

<p>Governor Perry signs H.B. 1451 establishing basic humane standards of care for breeding dogs</p>
June 17, 2011

NEW YORK-The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today expressed thanks to Governor Rick Perry for signing House Bill (HB) 1451 into law, which initiates oversight of large-scale commercial breeding facilities, known as puppy mills. Sponsored by Rep. Senfronia Thompson, D-Houston, and championed in the Senate by Sen. John Whitmire, D-Houston, the bill establishes minimum standards for the humane handling, care, housing and transportation of dogs and cats by breeders.

The new law applies to large-scale cat and dog breeders who maintain 11 or more female breeding animals and sell twenty or more animals per year. HB 1451 requires that breeders be inspected and that enclosures have adequate drainage, are made out of safe materials and have adequate space for animals to comfortably stand, sit, turn around and lie down in a natural position. The ASPCA worked with The Texas Humane Legislation Network and The Humane Society of the United States to support this bill.

"Texas was one of the last states without a law concerning commercial breeding operations, so Governor Perry's signature today marks a new era in the Lone Star State," said Jill Buckley, senior director of Government Relations for the ASPCA. "The public has become aware of the horrible conditions inside puppy mills and is no longer willing to tolerate animal cruelty in the dog breeding industry. Texans truly care about their pets and will not stand for cruelty in their commercial kennels."

Unlike responsible breeders, who place the utmost importance on producing the healthiest puppies possible, puppy mills prioritize profit over the well-being of the dogs. Dogs from puppy mills are sold in pet stores, online and directly to consumers with little to no regard for the dog's health, genetic history or future welfare. The ASPCA urges consumers not to buy a puppy from a pet store or any place that does not allow you to see its entire facility and meet the mother dog. This includes websites that sell pets online.

For more information on the ASPCA's efforts to fight puppy mill cruelty nationwide, please visit