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California Governor Gavin Newsom signed numerous new pieces of legislation that will help protect animal welfare in the Golden State. Newsom signed six pieces of legislation that will protect our beloved furry friends, including the end to unnecessary toxicological testing on dogs and cats.
The SB 879 or the PET (Prohibiting Extraneous Testing) Act will prohibit toxicity testing on dogs and cats for pesticides, chemical substances, and other products. The bill has exemptions for tests related to products intended for use in dogs or cats, including medical treatments. Unfortunately, the legislation does not impact federally required testing.
“For many families, including my own, pets are beloved companions that enrich our lives every day,” said Governor Newsom. “I’m proud to sign this legislation to advance our state’s leadership on animal welfare by ending cruel and unnecessary testing on dogs and cats, among other measures to protect the health and safety of pets in California.”
Newsom also signed AB 1648 by Assemblymember Brian Maienschein (D-San Diego), which requires kennel owners to create a natural disaster evacuation plan to receive a kennel license or permit. He also signed AB 1290 by Assemblymember Alex Lee (D-San Jose), which states that stealing or taking someone else’s companion animal is theft.
“As we celebrate California becoming the first state in the nation to prohibit certain testing on dogs and cats, we extend our gratitude to Governor Newsom for signing The PET Act, SB 879, into law,” said Kitty Block, President and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States. “Passing this bill shows California’s dedication to protecting animals from a life of suffering and isolation for the sake of unreliable tests. We appreciate Senator Wiener’s leadership on SB 879 and remain committed to ending all harmful toxicology testing on animals.”
Newsom also signed SB 774 by Senator Robert Hertzberg (D-Van Nuys), which will facilitate the emotional Support dog certification process for homeless individuals. He also signed AB 2723 by Assemblymember Chris Holden (D-Pasadena) which expands microchip registration requirements for dogs and cats, which will Support the return of lost pets as well as deter theft.
Newsom has done a lot for animals since taking office, including signing several measures to end the retail sale of dogs, cats, and rabbits, ban the sale of new fur products, prohibit the use of animals like elephants and bears in circus acts, ban hunting, trapping or killing bobcats, and require shelters to microchip all reclaimed or adopted cats and dogs.
Source: Sacramento Bee/YouTube
The 2021-22 and 2020-21 budgets in California included a $50 million investment for a statewide Animal Shelter Assistance Program to give the state’s animal shelters the training and resources to reach the state’s no-kill goal.
In 2017, 90 percent of shelter animals in Los Angeles were not euthanized after reaching a 2012 commitment to become a “no-kill” city. Delaware and Michigan are the only other two “no-kill” states in the country. Making its name as an animal-friendly state, California recently passed a fur ban, and these new laws will get the state even closer!
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