Why Puppies

Recovered from the Wayback Machine.

November 2, 2010, the people of Missouri voted for Proposition B: The Puppy Mill Cruelty Prevention Act. This Act is an amendment to existing laws that focuses specifically on commercial dog breeders, and strengthens current regulations regarding food, water, shelter, veterinary care, breeding frequency, and number of intact (not spayed or neutered) dogs. The bill also creates new Class C and Class A misdemeanors for puppy mill cruelty.

Proposition B was a controversial ballot issue, generating a considerable amount of heated discussion. Proponents for Proposition B included the Humane Society of the US, the Humane Society of Missouri, the ASCPA, the Best Friends Animal Society, Humane Society of Kansas City, Stray Rescue, and a host of other animal welfare organizations, civic leaders, Missouri veterinarians, and businesses. Supporters also included a lot of just plain folks, like me.

There was strong opposition to Proposition B, from commercial dog breeders, which was a given, but also from cattlemen, chicken farmers, the Missouri Farm Bureau, Missouri Federation of Animal Owners, Missouri Veterinarian Medical Association, and even the AKC. The argument from some of the organizations was that there are laws in place and the only problem is lack of enforcement. However, the main argument from the agricultural communities was not about Proposition B’s influence on dog breeding, but was more about a perceived influence of the bill on other forms of livestock management, including that for cattle, chickens, and hogs.

Though Proposition B was specifically worded for dogs, and was included in Missouri Revised Statutes under the Dog/Cat designation, many people voted against Proposition B primarily because they saw it impacting on other forms of livestock. However, the majority of Missourians voted for Proposition B and it passed 51.6% to 48.4%.

Immediately after the vote, the same groups that argued against Proposition B cried foul because the majority of the positive vote occurred in the St. Louis and Kansas City areas, while most of the rural areas voted No. “103 of 114 counties voted No!”, came the shout, as Proposition B opposition forces prepared to continue the fight past the election. Not long after, state representatives, including Senator Mike Parson and Senator BIll Parson, promised that they would bring about legislation in 2011 that would either repeal Proposition B completely, or revise it considerably. At this time, there are two bills, Missouri House Bill 94 and Missouri Senate Bill 4, both focused on repealing Proposition B.

This site’s purpose is not only to track these and other bills associated with Proposition B, but also to provide a more in-depth look at what Proposition B is, and how it will impact on existing dog breeders, now and in the future. I hope that this site is helpful in the fight to preserve Proposition B.

And preserve Proposition B, we must. We have allowed barbaric conditions at too many large scale dog breeders to exist for too long.

He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals — Immanuel Kant

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Burningbird Weather

Happy New Year

As you can see if you’re reading this, the move to a new hosting company went very well. I’m already exceptionally pleased with Linode, not the least of which the dashboard the company provides makes maintaining the site so much easier.

The only real challenges I faced were setting up the email system, and porting my Just Shelley web site; the former is just plain cumbersome, and the latter did not like the move to a PHP 5.3 environment. After the move I discovered that Drupal 7 is PHP 5.3 friendly, Drupal 6 is not. There is something in Just Shelley that triggered problems, though luckily the other sites ported without any problems.

So, I’ve upgrade Just Shelley to Drupal 7, as well as having installed a new Drupal 7 account, and I’m finally getting a chance to take the new version for a run. I can already see I have a lot of work to do. Yes, a lot of work.

In the meantime, we had a exciting day here in New Year’s Eve. We kept getting tornado warnings, and I spent most of the morning hovering around the downstairs interior bathroom.

Just around noon, the siren went off again and the news said a funnel was spotted over Webster Groves or Shrewsbury. I looked outside, and the winds had suddenly reversed direction. There was a rushing sound, but not exceptionally loud. A few minutes later, the winds reversed back and things started calming down.

We didn’t get hit but the F3 tornado did a major amount of damage a couple of miles away. I don’t know if a tornado that far away could impact on wind in our area, or if there was another funnel cloud forming over us that didn’t form into a full tornado. Regardless, we lucked out. So did the people in Sunset Hills, because for the amount of damage done—and it is significant— folks only suffered minor injuries. Unfortunately, there were folks in other parts of the state not as lucky.

I haven’t been to my favorite walking place, since it’s on the other side of the damage path and I don’t want to add to the traffic. There have been a lot of gawkers, but the folks at Sunset Hills came up with the idea of borrowing firemen boots and taking up a collection for the tornado victims from the gawkers. Absolutely brilliant idea.