SAN FRANCISCO MACY’S SFSPCA HOLIDAY WINDOWS 2016

For many years in the San Francisco Bay Area, the holidays have been prime time for pet adoptions when many people have extra time and room in their hearts.  Wednesday morning, December 21, cool and sunny amidst plenty of street construction was the annual visit to the San Francisco SPCA’s  holiday adoption windows at the downtown Macy’s where holiday marketing meets outreach on the prime retail corner of Stockton and O’Farrell streets..  Although the windows this year were small, and there were only 3 animal windows, the lovely dog figures from years before 2015 were re-purposed in a new, bright scene in the corner window.  This was the third year of two blocks of Stockton Street closed to traffic for rail construction and covered with astroturf and new this year, food trucks.  The atmosphere is festive, if less elegant even with Neiman Marcus looming.  The destination window is nearly hidden behind the crowd and usual hot dog stand.

Finally, in an almost overwhelming red jumble is the corner window, inviting to sort out the narrative, the characters and contents.

corner-window-jumble

But first, the adoption windows.  One has 3 cats.

3-kittens-straight-cropped

Another has 2 puppies — 2-1/2 months old, soundly sleeping.

2-pups

The third and only pet window on O’Farrell Street is empty.

empty-kitten-window

Inside, tucked away behind scarves is the adoption desk and “back room” where the rest of the animals are, all visible were cats.

Back outside to survey the corner window in such contrast to the 2015 minimalist Peanuts theme.  This year’s setting is the North Pole’s command center where elves handle the navigation station and help Santa check his long list.  How will they ever pack so many presents?  There at the North Pole are all the wonderful purebred dogs and one cat once again, old friends in scene that assures visitors there are still visions of Christmas downtown San Francisco to attract pressing crowds even on a Wednesday morning.

And the old friends… the Afghan, the Bloodhound, the Rottweiler, the Dachshund, the Schnauzer, the Yorkie, the French Bulldog, the Papillon and the Siberian each high atop the console, the Boxer and the white cat.

the-afghan-2016rott-bloodhoundmost-of-dogsfrenchy-yorkie-schnauzercorner-window-jumble

p1190341papillon

Wanting a little glimpse of San Francisco elegance before leaving, just around the corner on Geary were the Louis Vuitton windows with more red — and meerkats, too.

The windows will be open through Sunday, January 1, 2017.  As of our visit, the adoption count was 179.  In 2015, the final count was 261.

179-loving-homes-12-21-2016

*** THE END 2016 ***

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

APHIS Animal Welfare Act Rulemaking After the 2014 Farm Bill and 2013 Amendments to AWA: The “de minimis” Term and its Applications

The comment period for the proposed rule has closed with little fanfare and probably less understanding.  Pet breeders currently exempt or licensed are probably unaffected unless they have another factors, but there are still regulatory developments that should be reviewed in order to maintain working knowledge of the Animal Welfare Act.  Below is our file memorandum of the rule items but not the deletions from existing regulations because of obsolete language for which biomedical research organizations did comment on their concerns that this was a substantive matter that was presented incorrectly and should be covered in a subsequent and separate Rule.  A total of 29 comments were submitted ranging from thoughtful to totally uninformed, major organizations to individuals, directly interested and not.  The major organizations focused on criticism of the proposed regulations for very small exhibitors and asked for more stringent language.  Reference links follow this entry.

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS,) submitted a narrative of the Rule with emphasis on its own priorities and one request for a change, “The HSUS recommends that USDA more clearly define “substantial” as the proposed language provides insufficient guidance for regulated parties and those charged with enforcing the law. “Minimal amount of money” and “main source of the person’s income” are insufficient criteria: we recommend that USDA define “substantial portion of income” as more than 50% of the person’s income.”  Considering that a person might have a very low total income and support from other sources, the percentage would be no evidence of whether the actual amount was not substantial.  The Animal Welfare Institute in Washington D.C. also focused on this exemption for certain exhibitors, Section 2.1(a)(3)(xii) and recommended “exhibition for no more than ten days per 12 month period, for which the owner is compensated no more than $1,000 or 10% of his or her taxable income, whichever is less…”  The American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) echoed HSUS with, “In order to clarify application of the proposed de minimis thresholds for agency enforcement staff and the regulated community, APHIS should define “less than a substantial portion of income” as less than fifty percent of the individual’s income” and also stressed its overall criticism of the Agency.  The Association of Zoos and Acquariums (AZA) asked for expanded regulation, “we believe that there are other segments of the animal “industry” that should be subject to USDA licensure and regulation….namely those entities which hold potentially dangerous carnivores and non-human primates but are not presently subject to any federal agency oversight.”  An existing Class C licensee (exhibitor) argued that the exemptions were too liberal and asked that “anyone profiting by more than $100 a day from exhibiting an animal should be required to be licensed by the USDA or to work under the guidance of a licensed USDA trainer.”

ANALYSIS AND RELATED REFERENCES AND ISSUES: Docket No. APHIS–2014–0059, Thresholds for De Minimis Activity and Exemptions From Licensing Under the Animal Welfare Act

Background:

APHIS, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA has published a proposed rule (Federal Register, Vol. 81, No. 150 / Thursday, August 4, 2016, Docket No. APHIS–2014–0059) entitled, “Thresholds for De Minimis Activity and Exemptions From Licensing Under the Animal Welfare Act.”  The proposed rule includes several new licensing exemptions combining the “de minimis” term added to the Animal Welfare Act Section 2133  by the 2014 Farm bill and the exhibitor definition in Section 2132 (amended by Congress in 2013, S. 3666; Public Law: 112–261.)  It also deletes from the regulations the language corresponding to the 2014 Farm Bill provision that deleted from the Section 2132(f) dealer definition the exclusion for “any person who does not sell, or negotiate the purchase or sale of any wild animal, dog, or cat, and who derives no more than $500 gross income from the sale of other animals during any calendar year.”  The proposed changes to 9 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR)  include Part 1, Section 1.1 Definitions, new for dealer and exhibitor and Part 2, Regulations, Section 2.1 Requirements and Applications, (3) licensing exemptions, revision of exemption (ii) and addition of five new paragraphs including four new exemptions and one explanatory table of the new de minimis exemptions. The rule also includes a number of housekeeping amendments to Part 3 of the Regulations, Standards.

The key principle in understanding this proposed rule is implementation of Congressional intent to direct the agency’s efforts and resources to covered activities where risk to animal welfare is greater than operations keeping only few animals of species with well understood care standards under well understood circumstances.  Historically, APHIS has tried to maintain this priority with regulatory adjustments due to industry changes such as 2012 Docket No. APHIS–2006–0159 (77 FR 76815–76824 that revised the retail pet store definition and related exemptions or now with these 2013 and 2014 amendments to AWA.  Congress relies on the agency’s experience and knowledge of animals and operations to develop specific exemptions for low risk factual scenarios.  As the basis for these proposals, the agency cites its specific rationale for each issue and also asks questions for instances where is less certainty.  These questions offer those with expertise limited opportunities for input in the Final Rule.

In explaining its purpose and scope, the proposed rule references the Farm Bill Conference Report, Item 19 that explained the rational and expectations for these 2014 amendments to AWA.  The proposed rule states, “this legislation codifies the exemption we made to the regulations in § 2.1(a)(3)(vii) for purebred dog and cat fanciers, and/or breeders of small exotic or wild mammals, who maintain four or fewer breeding females and sell the offspring at retail for pets or exhibition.”  The explanation continued that “we intend to retain these exemptions, with four or fewer breeding female dogs, cats, and small exotic or wild mammals sold at wholesale” because “thresholds in the current exemptions for dealers are based on the total number of breeding females of all species combined” are low enough that operators are able to provide adequate care without regulatory supervision.  What is not addressed or included in the proposed regulation amendments is the Conference Report subject of breeding females when there is no statutory reference or authority for this key element that is becoming even more important with these proposals.  On this subject, the Report stated:

“The Managers are aware of confusion among the regulated industry and request clarification of two principles pertaining to the sale of pets: (1) Current regulatory language uses the term ‘‘breeding female’’ which does not appear in statute and thus lacks statutory direction. The Managers urge APHIS to clarify that only those female animals capable of reproduction and actively being used in a breeding program qualify as breeding females.”

Based on its repeated reliance on the number “four” as its experience substantiated standard for ensuring adequate care and basis for additional exemptions, an inference might be drawn from the omission that the agency does not believe the “breeding female” term warrants further clarification in the de minimis exemption context.  However, commenters might disagree and raise this issue.

The statutory foundations for principles underlying the proposed regulations are 7 USC (AWA):

Section 2132  (h) The term “exhibitor” means any person (public or private) exhibiting any animals, which were purchased in commerce or the intended distribution of which affects commerce, or will affect commerce, to the public for compensation, as determined by the Secretary, and such term includes carnivals, circuses, and zoos exhibiting such animals whether operated for profit or not; but such term excludes retail pet stores, an owner of a common, domesticated household pet who derives less than a substantial portion of income from a nonprimary source (as determined by the Secretary) for exhibiting an animal that exclusively resides at the residence of the pet owner, organizations sponsoring and all persons participating in State and country fairs, livestock shows, rodeos, purebred dog and cat shows, and any other fairs or exhibitions intended to advance agricultural arts and sciences, as may be determined by the Secretary.

Section 2133. Licensing of dealers and exhibitors

The Secretary shall issue licenses to dealers and exhibitors upon application therefor in such form and manner as he may prescribe and upon payment of such fee established pursuant to 2153 of this title: Provided, That no such license shall be issued until the dealer or exhibitor shall have demonstrated that his facilities comply with the standards promulgated by the Secretary pursuant to section 2143 of this title: Provided, however, That a dealer or exhibitor shall not be required to obtain a license as a dealer or exhibitor under this chapter if the size of the business is determined by the Secretary to be de minimis. The Secretary is further authorized to license, as dealers or exhibitors, persons who do not qualify as dealers or exhibitors within the meaning of this chapter upon such persons’ complying with the requirements specified above and agreeing, in writing, to comply with all the requirements of this chapter and the regulations promulgated by the Secretary hereunder.

Proposed definitions and exemptions, explanations and issues:

  • 1.1 Definitions.

Dealer means any person who, in commerce, for compensation or profit, delivers for transportation, or transports, except as a carrier, buys, or sells, or negotiates the purchase or sale of: Any dog or other animal whether alive or dead (including unborn animals, organs, limbs, blood, serum, or other parts) for research, teaching, testing, experimentation, exhibition, or for use as a pet; or any dog at the wholesale level for hunting, security, or breeding purposes. This term does not include: A retail pet store, as defined in this section; or any retail outlet where dogs are sold for hunting, breeding, or security purposes.

Exhibitor means any person (public or private) exhibiting any animals, which were purchased in commerce or the intended distribution of which affects commerce, or will affect commerce, to the public for compensation, as determined by the Secretary, and such term includes carnivals, circuses, and zoos exhibiting such animals whether operated for profit or not; but such term excludes retail pet stores, an owner of a common, domesticated household pet who derives less than a substantial portion of income from a nonprimary source (as determined by the Secretary) for exhibiting an animal that exclusively resides at the residence of the pet owner, organizations sponsoring and all persons participating in State and country fairs, livestock shows, rodeos, purebred dog and cat shows, and any other fairs or exhibitions intended to advance agricultural arts and sciences, as may be determined by the Secretary.

PART 2—REGULATIONS

9 CFR 2.1(3) licensing exemptions, existing (i) through (viii) as follows:

(3) The following persons are exempt from the licensing requirements under section 2 or section 3 of the Act:

(i) Retail pet stores as defined in part 1 of this subchapter:   NOTE – referenced definition below.

9 CFR 1.1, Definitions:

Retail pet store means a place of business or residence at which the seller, buyer, and the animal available for sale are physically present so that every buyer may personally observe the animal prior to purchasing and/or taking custody of that animal after purchase, and where only the following animals are sold or offered for sale, at retail, for use as pets: Dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, gerbils, rats, mice, gophers, chinchillas, domestic ferrets, domestic farm animals, birds, and coldblooded species. In addition to persons that meet these criteria, retail pet store also includes any person who meets the criteria in § 2.1(a)(3)(vii) of this subchapter. Such definition excludes—

(1) Establishments or persons who deal in dogs used for hunting, security, or breeding purposes;

(2) Establishments or persons, except those that meet the criteria in § 2.1(a)(3)(vii), exhibiting, selling, or offering to exhibit or sell any wild or exotic or other nonpet species of warmblooded animals (except birds), such as skunks, raccoons, nonhuman primates, squirrels, ocelots, foxes, coyotes, etc.;

(3) Any establishment or person selling warmblooded animals (except birds, and laboratory rats and mice) for research or exhibition purposes;

(4) Any establishment wholesaling any animals (except birds, rats, and mice); and

(5) Any establishment exhibiting pet animals in a room that is separate from or adjacent to the retail pet store, or in an outside area, or anywhere off the retail pet store premises.

As to (ii) the proposed rule states, “However, to make the regulations consistent with the amended Act, we are proposing to remove in its entirety the $500 gross income exemption from licensing currently in § 2.1(a)(3)(ii)” and further explains the proposed new content, “In its place, we would add language that exempts from licensing any person whose business is determined by APHIS to be de minimis in accordance with the proposed regulations in § 2.1(a)(3).”

(ii) Any person who sells or negotiates the sale or purchase of any animal except wild or exotic animals, dogs, or cats, and who derives no more than $500 gross income from the sale of such animals during any calendar year and is not otherwise required to obtain a license Any person whose AWA-related business activity is determined by APHIS to be de minimis in accordance with the regulations in this section;

(iii) Any person who maintains a total of four or fewer breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals, such as hedgehogs, degus, spiny mice, prairie dogs, flying squirrels, and jerboas, and who sells, at wholesale, only the offspring of these dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals, which were born and raised on his or her premises, for pets or exhibition, and is not otherwise required to obtain a license. This exemption does not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than four breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals on premises on which more than four breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than four breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals regardless of ownership;

(iv) Any person who sells fewer than 25 dogs and/or cats per year, which were born and raised on his or her premises, for research, teaching, or testing purposes or to any research facility and is not otherwise required to obtain a license. This exemption does not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively sells 25 or more dogs and/or cats, regardless of ownership, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively sell 25 or more dogs and/or cats, regardless of ownership. The sale of any dog or cat not born and raised on the premises for research purposes requires a license;

(v) Any person who arranges for transportation or transports animals solely for the purpose of breeding, exhibiting in purebred shows, boarding (not in association with commercial transportation), grooming, or medical treatment, and is not otherwise required to obtain a license;

(vi) Any person who buys, sells, transports, or negotiates the sale, purchase, or transportation of any animals used only for the purposes of food or fiber (including fur);

(vii) Any person including, but not limited to, purebred dog or cat fanciers, who maintains a total of four or fewer breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals, such as hedgehogs, degus, spiny mice, prairie dogs, flying squirrels, and jerboas, and who sells, at retail, only the offspring of these dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals, which were born and raised on his or her premises, for pets or exhibition, and is not otherwise required to obtain a license. This exemption does not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than four breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals on premises on which more than four breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than four breeding female dogs, cats, and/or small exotic or wild mammals regardless of ownership.

(viii) Any person who buys animals solely for his or her own use or enjoyment and does not sell or exhibit animals, or is not otherwise required to obtain a license;

The Proposed Rule would add 5 additional subsections, ix through viii:  These include one new catchall exemption (ix), three new exemptions applicable only to exhibitors (x, xi and xii) and one table (viii) summarizing the four de minimis exemptions.

The proposed Rule states, “We propose in a new § 2.1(a)(3)(ix) to establish a de minimis exemption for any person who maintains a total of four or fewer breeding female dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, and who sells, at retail or wholesale, only the offspring of these animals, which were born  and raised on his or her premises, and is not otherwise required to obtain a license. As is the case with the current licensing exemptions, this de minimis exemption from licensing as a dealer would not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than four such breeding female animals, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining such breeding female animals on premises on which more than four such breeding female animals  are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than four such breeding female animals, regardless of ownership. The animals listed as eligible for the proposed de minimis exemption were chosen because they are common domesticated animals with a well-established history of known welfare standards. Again, businesses already exempted under current licensing exemptions would not be affected by this proposed exemption, nor would sales of farm animals be affected if they are sold for the purpose of improving animal nutrition, breeding, management, or production efficiency, or for food or fiber.”

This proposed exemption reads:

(ix) Any person who maintains a total of four or fewer breeding female dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, and who sells, at retail or wholesale, only the offspring of these dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, which were born and raised on his or her premises, and is not otherwise required to obtain a license. This exemption does not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than four breeding female dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining breeding female dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep on premises on which more than four breeding female dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than four breeding female dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, regardless of ownership.

The three Exhibitor Exemptions are explained and read respectively as follows:

“As indicated above, we also propose to establish de minimis thresholds for some businesses engaged in AWA covered exhibition activities. This action would exempt exhibitors considered to be de minimis from licensing if they meet the proposed thresholds and relieve them of the requirement to perform the reporting and recordkeeping activities associated with licensing.

The de minimis thresholds we propose to include for exhibitors would be based on the size of their AWA related business activity as measured by the total number of animals maintained, the type of exhibitor activity, and/or the duration of exhibition (as measured in days). However, there are situations that preclude de minimis consideration for certain exhibitors. In the Conference Report accompanying the 2014 Farm Bill amendments to the Act, Congress indicated that ‘‘an exhibitor’s business must not be considered de minimis merely because the facility operates as a non-profit corporation, nor is the exhibition of a small number of dangerous animals (including, but not limited to, big cats, bears, wolves,nonhuman primates, or elephants) de minimis.’’

In a new § 2.1(a)(3)(x), we would establish a de minimis licensing exemption for people in a household who in total maintain four or fewer dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, for exhibition and who houses the animals at a site for year-round exhibition, and is not otherwise required to obtain a license. This exemption for a license as an exhibitor would not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than four such animals, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining such animals on premises on which more than four such animals are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than four such animals, regardless of ownership.

Based on our extensive knowledge and experience of animals used for year round exhibition purposes, we determined the threshold for this exemption to be four, as exhibitors with a small number of common, domesticated, non-dangerous animals are capable of providing adequate care and treatment for the animals involved in regulated business activities, based on compliance data on currently licensed exhibitors.”

(x) Any person who maintains a total of four or fewer dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, for exhibition and houses the animals permanently at the site where they are exhibited year-round, and is not otherwise required to obtain a license.  This exemption does not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than four dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep on premises on which more than four dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than four dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, regardless of ownership.

“In a new § 2.1(a)(3)(xi), we would also include de minimis licensing exemptions for certain persons using animals in seasonal exhibitions. The exemption would apply to any person who maintains a total of eight or fewer dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, for seasonal exhibition only, and who exhibits any or all of the animals for no more than 30 days per calendar year, and is not otherwise required to obtain a license. This exemption would not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than eight such animals, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining eight such animals on premises on which more than eight such animals are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than eight such animals, regardless of ownership. We determined the de minimis threshold for seasonal exhibition to be eight common, domesticated, nondangerous animals based on the fact that, unlike animals exhibited year round, animals exhibited seasonally are displayed to the public for a minimal period of time (30 days or less each year) during holiday seasons such as Easter, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.”

(xi) Any person who maintains a total of eight or fewer dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, for seasonal exhibition and exhibits any or all of the animals for no more than 30 days per calendar year, and is not otherwise required to obtain a license. This exemption does not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than eight dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining eight dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep on premises on which more than eight dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than eight dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep, regardless of ownership.

“Therefore, we propose to include a regulatory licensing exemption in a new § 2.1(a)(3)(xii) for any person who maintains a total of four or fewer common, domesticated household pet animals, who uses them for intermittent or infrequent exhibition for no more than 30 days per calendar year, who derives less than a substantial portion of income from a nonprimary source for exhibiting such animals, whose animals reside exclusively at the residence of the owner, and who is not otherwise required to obtain a license. This exemption would not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than four pet animals, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining pet animals on premises on which more than four pet animals are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than four pet animals, regardless of ownership.  We determined the total number of animals for this exemption to be four because our experience indicates that exhibitors who maintain and exhibit four or fewer animals and those who exhibit resident pet animals infrequently or intermittently (i.e., no more than 30 days per year) for minimal amounts of money are capable of providing adequate care and treatment for the animals involved in the regulated business activities without Federal licensing and inspection requirements to ensure animal welfare.  Additionally, exhibitors with four or fewer animals are less likely to generate a substantial income as a primary source from exhibiting such animals compared to persons exhibiting with larger numbers of animals as the primary source of income.”

(xii) Any person who maintains a total of four or fewer common, domesticated, non-dangerous household pet animals for infrequent or intermittent exhibition for no more than 30 days per calendar year, who derives less than a substantial portion of income from a nonprimary source for exhibiting such animals, whose animals reside exclusively at the residence of the owner, and who is not otherwise be required to obtain a license. This exemption would not extend to any person residing in a household that collectively maintains a total of more than four pet animals, regardless of ownership, nor to any person maintaining pet animals on premises on which more than four pet animals are maintained, nor to any person acting in concert with others where they collectively maintain a total of more than four pet animals, regardless of ownership.

Summary table included as a numbered subsection (viii🙂

“For easier reference, we also propose adding to the regulations a new § 2.1(a)(3)(xiii) that includes a summary table of the de minimis threshold requirements included in paragraphs (a)(3)(ix) through (a)(3)(xii).  The proposed thresholds are ultimately based on our experience that businesses conducting AWA-regulated activities with the animals indicated for each threshold present a minimal risk to animal welfare and therefore do not require APHIS licensing and inspection.  However, the list of animals eligible for de minimis consideration is not intended to be exhaustive. We encourage public comment on the proposed exemption thresholds as they pertain to animal welfare and effects on businesses engaged in the breeding, dealing, or exhibition of animals.  We also invite comments on the types of exhibition proposed in the table, particularly with regard to types of animals and exhibition business models that may not be represented here.”

(xiii) Following is a summary of the de minimis exemption requirements for paragraphs (ix) to (xii) of this section: de-minimis-thresholds-from-licensing-table

The experience based principles used by APHIS include:

1 – Only one exemption per premises regardless of ownership of individual breeding females for combined species or number of owners or occupants of the premises.  This standard of one exemption per premises principle had been established by prior Docket 97-121-1 adopted in 2004 amending Section 2.1(a)(3)(iii.)  Generally applying this principle with its experience based “four” number, the new exhibitor exemptions are limited to no more than 4 pet animals maintained on one premises. This not only ensures proper care but increases the likelihood in combination with time limits for exhibition, only a small amount of income is likely to be produced.

2 – As to exhibitors excluded by the statutory definition, exhibitors’ income, “minimal amount of money that the owner makes from exhibiting animals. We interpret ‘‘a nonprimary source’’ to mean the activity is not a full-time job or primary source of income.”  Based on its experience, the agency states, “Based on the industry pay rates for pet animal film work and on our experience from working with small exhibitors, we determined that persons with four or fewer common domesticated household pet animals that are exhibited infrequently or intermittently generate a less than substantial portion of income and therefore meet the requirements for the exclusion.”

3 – The species allowed for these exemptions are limited to those that can be used as pets, are considered nondangerous and domesticated with well understood behavior and standards of care.  For proposed exemption (xi) the allowed species are dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep for which the maximum is 4 breeding females of all allowed species combined. Cows, goats, pigs and sheep are excluded as livestock if they meet that exclusion criteria, “farm animals that are used or intended for use as food or fiber, or for improving animal nutrition, breeding, management, or production efficiency.”  Otherwise the Rule notes that “farm animals used or exhibited for regulated purposes, such as petting zoos, would continue to fall under the scope of the Act unless they otherwise qualify for a de minimis exemption from licensing.”  This is a key difference between proposed exemption (ix) and existing exemptions (iii) and (vii) that include “small exotic or wild mammals” in covered species but do not anticipate breeding farm animals as pets.  Proposed exemption (ix) includes these along with some small pet species, “dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchillas, cows, goats, pigs, and sheep.”

4 – As to non-breeding animals used in exhibitions, APHIS relates different but small numbers of animals to the location and number of days exhibited, i.e. different operating models as the criteria for determining de minimis character not requiring regulatory supervision.

Specific issues proposed by APHIS for public comment include:

1 – “We encourage public comment on the proposed exemption thresholds as they pertain to animal welfare and effects on businesses engaged in the breeding, dealing, or exhibition of animals.”

2 – “We also invite comments on the types of exhibition proposed in the table, particularly with regard to types of animals and exhibition business models that may not be represented here.”

3 – “We interpret less than substantial income to mean the exhibition generates a minimal amount of money and does not constitute a main source of the person’s income. We seek comment on this interpretation and whether we should add it to the regulatory text.”

EDITOR’S NOTE:  The Comment period closed on November 2, 2016, and the 27 submitted comments are posted in the online Docket file where further developments will eventually be posted. 

Instructions:

This proposed rule is Docket No. APHIS–2014–0059.  Comments must be received on or before November 2, 2016 and submitted either online through the Federal eRulemaking Portal http://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=APHIS-2014-0059 or by mail or delivery to Docket No. APHIS–2014–0059, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station3A–03.8, 4700 River Road, Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737–1238           

Note that submitted comments are posted online at this portal along with all the file documents including the Federal Register publication of the Docket.

Other references:

The 2014 Farm Bill and Conference Report document referenced in the Docket and here is at https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CRPT-113hrpt333/pdf/CRPT-113hrpt333.pdf

Animal Welfare Act, current   http://goo.gl/nuznYz

CFR Title 9, Animals and Animal Products    http://goo.gl/oSvQSe

U.S. Government Printing Office combined version of Farm Bill amendments and Conference Report.  Relevant materials are AWA amendments at pages 348-349 and Conference Item 19 at pages 561-563. http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CRPT-113hrpt333/pdf/CRPT-113hrpt333.pdf

THE COW PALACE 2016: TAC’S GGKC Scrapbook

Since the Golden Gate Kennel Club format is now separate benched shows on Saturday and Sunday and well downsized from the 2-day single show, a one day visit works better than the old times of two exhausting days of a dog show that was part of an annual mass social event. Like a community or family where times have changed, downsizing is survival that becomes the new normal — it’s still a unique event. As always, the serious gate  comes early on Saturday as we did on the sunny Saturday of January 30, 2016. The usual band of informational protesters were on hand at the gate.

protesters-at-door

Heading right in to assess this year’s American Kennel Club merchandise table, front and center.

With catalogue, still $7 in hand, a quick step up for a look at the main arena.  Shock! As if eliminating the center aisle hangout for watching dogs, meeting and greeting hadn’t been  enough, blue carpet now covered all the rings “upstairs,” while the rest of the rings are now “downstairs” in the lower livestock buildings on the old blacktop.

The plan is to first check the vendors in the main concourse outside the arena and in the South and North Halls and walk all the bench rows in these halls, check the judging schedule for an interesting “break” in the stands of the arena and then walk all the lower buildings to see more vendors, benching and rings — usually missing whatever “special attractions” are scheduled as entertainment for the public spectators.  First, the candy vendor is setting up the gorgeous fudges, a different coffee vendor and GGKC’s information table and office door.  There are fewer vendors in the main concourse, but it’s a good place for public foot traffic for those like jeweler Fanny Fish and bag seller Tri Tran (Trimitive from Orange County) or Husse Foods, a Swedish dog and cat food and product manufacturer with an international franchise model. http://www.husse.com/pet-food-franchise/

Once in the benching halls, the vendors are clustered along the entry walls and a center aisle including some geared to public shows rather than dog shows, although “our” vendors have the best spots where we expect to find them such as Paw Print Genetics and Let’s Go Design with its jackets designed for dog walkers.

https://www.pawprintgenetics.com/                            http://letsgodesign.net/

And one of our favorites, the Osher’s GoneDoggin from Grass Valley, California.

gone-doggin-tapestries

But, we’re here to see the dogs and who is with them:

And the information and breed club rescue tables:

On down to the lower buildings for more vendors and the “nonprofits” that are few now and vary from year to year.

And more dogs, the American Chesapeake Club and its annual Supported Entries; a fraction of past entries but still the largest west coast conformation entry for Chessies.

chessies

Doubling back through the South Hall, remembering when this corner was elbow-to-elbow people.

south-hall-coner

A few more vendors, South Hall grooming area with plenty of space, club displays, cotton candy and lemonade and last look at the AKC booth on the way out.

One of our founding board members won Best Owner Handler in her breed this day, so we’re still here, sort of. Little girls with parents in tow, still get a gleam in their eyes and dream in their hearts. Connections are made that change lives. The show went on even if it’s not as our parents or we knew it. Three o’clock, one last look at the parking lot… ’til next year.

3-pm-saturday

THE END

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE COW PALACE — TAC’S 2015 GOLDEN GATE KENNEL CLUB SCRAPBOOK

The 2016 show is coming up in less than 2 weeks! Here’s the 2016 poster, on display at Pet Food Express store. Admission prices have risen (entry fee was $35.00 per dog event) so bring $$$ if you’re coming, but regular attendees know that. To get in the mood, we’re finishing up the 2015 report. The “advantage” of being late — we’ll get in the mood and be ready to notice what’s new from last year.

Cow Palace 2016

So, Saturday, January 24, 2015 was our one day. With 2 separate shows on the 2 days and fewer friends and family to make the trek, one day does it. The weather was fair — always a plus, and the small, perennial group of protesters have learned it is warmer in the afternoon, so the first greeting were some negative sounding signs … no pets, no un-entered dogs, no food, no beverages.

Welcome - No Pets Allowed

Welcom - No unenter, no food no beverages

But, we’re here! The American Kennel Club booth is front and center, this year featuring lots of bags,  more bags and garment bags.

AKC merch - tote bags

AKC merch - more bags

AKC merch - garment bags

From the main concourse, turn up concrete stairs to get a look at the main arena. What’s this? There is no center aisle! The wide aisle with potted trees (good for hiding) and lined with the Cow Palace’s heavy but cushioned folding chairs is no more. The place for spectating associates of exhibitors to hold extra stuff to pass to handlers, mark catalogs and actually watch judging. The place for all kinds of insider visitors to see and be seen, greet old friends and make new ones and watch judging without inane comments from unknowing spectators.  Gone.

Arena - new layout

We can just make out the Cavalier ring and Professional Handler Bill McFadden (leaning forward,) so there’s serious competition there. Note, bring binoculars if you want to seriously watch judging.

Cavalier - serious competition

Keep on moving.  Let’s walk the benches in the South and North Halls of the Main Arena. Regional AKC breed clubs compete for best decorated bench or at least an effort to identify themselves. This is the Toy Fox Terrier club, but eventually we do find the Rat Terrier Club.

Toy Fox Terrier Club

Nostalgia…childhood neighbor’s father was among the original organizers of this club…in 1938.  A Boxer and Saint Bernard breeder and AKC judge, he walked everywhere as though he was in a conformation ring, about to make awards.

St Bernard Club of the Pacific Coast

The Pembrokes may be getting too popular…

Golden Gate Welsh Corgi Fanciers

This is a Bracco Italiano, the Italian pointer.

Bracco Italiano

And here is a benchful of Mudik (plural) — the Mudi is a rare, Hungarian herding breed.  The bench format is a rare opportunity for both the fancy and public to see uncommon dogs (and their people.)

Mudi

There are breed information and rescue tables apart from the bench areas.

Sierra West Bernese Mt Dog Club

Portuguese Water Dogs

Always the happiest, busiest vendor on the concourse descending from the South Hall.

Fudge

And in 2015, a fancy coffee truck brought in – beverage to go with your candy!

Coffee Truck

If you haven’t found what you’re looking for, the club information table is now a regular feature.

GGKC Info

Best to do some browsing before heading outside to the “Lower” halls  — something like window shopping before moving on to much more. There are services as well as products.

Paw Print Genetics

Paw Print Genetics offers a number of genetic tests – we have to keep up with what’s new.

The entrepreneurial spirit always brings out ambitious startups with high hopes.  In 2015 one of these was The Bulldog Baths, a new day care and boarding facility at 132 Turk St, in the Tenderloin (close to the Warfield Theater) of San Francisco.  The business name had a colorful history as a former gay baths.  Now it offered “cage free and tailored adventures” for dogs. Unfortunately, the operators closed during the first year when “our Dog Resort sadly no longer makes economic sense.”

This stack of unusual crates along with a ramp really caught our eye.  Made in Switzerland and marketed by PETCARE in Sacramento, these “safety crates” come in different sizes according to size of dog AND size of vehicle.  Prices run from $500 to $1000.

Petcare

Over the past 30 years, sturdy crates almost disappeared in favor of inexpensive wire, plastic and now fabric crates that are useful and portable but not strong. There is now consumer demand for crates that can be affixed in vehicles with the strength to withstand crashes and protect the precious cargo.

Another interesting, high end product that might go well in a luxury kitchen were Glasspaw water bowls made of very heavyweight glass in luscious colors.

Glasspaw

Then there are all sorts of vendors of the practical, unique and mundane, and some not dog related but marketing to the gate. This one has a color selection of 2-dog leashes.

2 dog items

All Hounds Apparel  Collars  15

Daisy Dog - human clothingdog clothes  human shoes

Fog Dog Studios.jpg

Granite  Portraits

Sacred Laughter  Dog Sports Design

Star

Tapestry   portraits

Tapestry vendor

Tri Tran’s Timitive is best known from street fairs but has inexpensive, useful bags including a must have Dalmatian bag!

Trimitive and Tri

Trimitive

collectibles

Here’s Lets Go Design back for a second year with their high end, all in one dog walking jacket. They even have special plastic cleanup bags to fit the special pocket.

Lets Go Design

Now, we leave the main building, down ramps and outside to the “lower” buildings with more benches, vendors and rings that are closer to a traditional dog show.  Here is the Chesapeake Bay Retriever bench with the gold and brown felt shields that are carefully preserved and used each year to mark each entrant’s space. There is no local club, but the entry is supported by the AKC parent club, the American Chesapeake Club.

ACC Bench

Here is the Chesapeake Best of Breed lineup on Saturday under Mrs. Eva Berg.

Chessie judging

The breed information/rescue tables are in the same building as the breed is benched, and the Ridgebacks have some eye-catchers this year.

RR Rescue

Lower - NC weim rescue

The “Special Attractions” are on the far side. In 2015, Flyball was featured.

 

Special Attraction - Flyball

Here is the Rat Terrier Club of America.

Rat Terrier Club of America

Back up to the main building, South Hall and the Dalmatian Club of Northern California. The 2015 theme was a take off on the TV show, The Amazing Race.

DCNC bench theme

Dalmatian exhibitor, author and daughter of poet, Anne Gray Sexton,  Linda Gray Sexton displayed hard and paper copies of her recent memoir of her family history with the breed. Many of us have similar histories that take our involvement with breeds from an interest to a legacy that includes long gone dogs, family members and friends.

Bespotted

The Dalmatians were away from the bench and in the main arena for judging.

Dalmatian judging

One last look at the main arena.

arena view

A last look at the AKC booth…

Thanks for Coming

Out into the afternoon sun to check on the perennial protesters.

They’ve brought plenty of signs to carry and a list of shelters and rescues to pass out, but there is little gate traffic at this time of day and the exhibitors are almost locked in.

Ready to confront

One last look and we’re off until next year.

Farewell

The End 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SAN FRANCISCO MACY’S SFSPCA HOLIDAY WINDOWS 2015

EDITOR’S NOTE: At the end of 2016, our video links are not supported by WordPress but may be viewed on  our YouTube Channel at  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxrLbEwRr7h-qBsBneFWrfA

This year’s visit was on a sunny, 40 something degree, quiet week day morning on Tuesday, December 29.  Schools were still on vacation and tourists still in town, sustaining the festive mood.  The first glimpse of the O’Farrell Street windows revealed new design this year.

P1180150

Getting closer, it was Peanuts characters.

2015 O'Farrell animal window

Happiness is a Warm Puppy is still on the book shelf, so maybe this will work as the background for cats and dogs available for adoption.  There is one actual animal in sight.

Here’s the dog, being described as a “3 month old Schnauzer mix.”  He’s certainly panting a lot and has a black kitten next door.  On his left, is another cat taking a nap in a corner.

Moving on to the corner window that has no live animals, just design, a mechanical Snoopy goes back and forth on a snowy slope with the cast of Peanuts character figures elevated in the background.

Around the corner is Lucy offering psychiatric advise.

2015 Stockton corner windowSnoopy labors on, backwards up the ski run and back down, continuously.  Outside, SFSPCA volunteers have information about the animals on display and cash collection containers.

On to the final window and a very active black cat.

This year’s narrative is new and divided between the 2 corner windows.  Is this dialogue between Charlie Brown and Lucy?  Apparently the scene depicts Charlie Brown directing a play to get with the holiday spirit.

2015 narrative 1And this looks like lyrics to a carroll.

2015 narrative 2Inside Macy’s on the First Floor between the ever expanding cosmetics department and elevators is the SFSPCA business desk; no visitors but two staffers at the ready for adoption applicants.

2015 SPCA deskAnd the holding area where there may be more animals in the cage bank to meet potential adopters.

2015 SPCA back roomYes, this is an established seasonal outreach event that annually places 200 to 300 plus cats and dogs in new homes.  But what draws us every year have been the wonderful, theatrical displays that have incorporated local settings with story lines, figures of carolers, of skating children and interaction with beautiful, realistic dogs and cats for magic effect that brought us back every year to carefully document and describe in this blog.  In 2014, that was the spectacular flying sleigh — perhaps too hard to top.  Macy’s used to sell the magic of cats and dogs in all their diversity, beauty and charm: not this year.  Selling pets is about selling magic and hope of joy the pet will bring to life.  Instead of building on the iconic title, Happiness is a Warm Puppy, this scene had Snoopy doing his own thing apart from any interaction with the characters.  Well, a Beagle might do that…

To enjoy those photos from past years going back to 2008, including all those Great Danes of Christmases past, peruse our Archives for some real treats.

The End – 2015

Editor’s note:  Sunday, January 3, 2016 was the final adoption day, and SFSPCA has announced the final adoption number for 2015 is 261.  The final number for 2014 was 267.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SAN FRANCISCO MACY’S SFSPCA HOLIDAY WINDOWS 2014

This year’s visit was after New Year’s, Friday, January 2, a sunny afternoon with all the promise of a new year and new homes for the dogs and cats populating the downtown San Francisco Macy’s windows for the 2014 run that ended that Sunday, January 4, 2015.

O'Farrell and Stockton Street Corner 2014-15
O’Farrell and Stockton Street Corner 2014-15
MACY'S
MACY’S

The windows!  Even hot dogs!

The Windows!
The Windows!

We love the juxtaposition of the annual Magical City corner window with its figures of purebred dogs and  pedigreed cats with the adjacent Magical Gift windows of cats and dogs available for adoption from the San Francisco SPCA that has to leave it’s “Adopt don’t buy” message at the facility.  Clever designers annually change the Magical City just enough to keep it fresh and surprising with its local backdrop, holiday theme and marvelous figures and music.

THE MAGICAL CITY 2014
THE MAGICAL CITY 2014

This year, the Magical City’s amazing surprise was a flying sleigh led by a French Bulldog and pulled by two Alaskan Malamutes.

THE MAGICAL GIFT, 2014
THE MAGICAL GIFT, 2014

Once in the festive mood, pet seekers can watch the cats and dogs, talk to the SFSPCA volunteers and go to the setup inside the store to see additional animals in a holding area, and sit down to begin an adoption or just consider the possibilities.

An empty cat window awaiting a new occupant.
An empty cat window awaiting a new occupant.

Here they are!

THE BIG WINDOW FOR CATS 2014
THE BIG WINDOW FOR CATS 2014

 

AN 8 WEEK KITTEN, 2014
AN 8 WEEK KITTEN, 2014

 

STOCKTON STREET CAT WINDOW 2014
ANOTHER CAT WINDOW 2014

Mesmerized adults and children crowd around each window with their cameras.

THE LONE DOG 2014
THE LONE DOG 2014

His cute little tan window mate was pulled to meet potential adopters inside the store!

MEETING THE ADOPTERS 2014
MEETING THE ADOPTERS 2014

Amidst the scarves on Macy’s first floor, the excited adopters meet the candidate.

SFSPCA ADOPTION TABLE - MACYS 1ST FLOOR 2014The deal closes here.

ADOPTION COUNT, JANUARY 2, 2015
ADOPTION COUNT, JANUARY 2, 2015

Back outside to check out the 2014 window design.

NEW GIRL IN TOWN 2014
NEW GIRL IN TOWN 2014

There is a new girl among the skaters this year, fitting San Francisco’s diversity.

THE TOY BREEDS 2014
THE TOY BREEDS 2014

The Papillon and Yorkie are dolled up this year.

THE DACHSHUND FIGURE 2014
THE DACHSHUND FIGURE 2014

Hat and coat for the Dachshund who does have a rather foxy look in more ways than one.

THE ROTTWEILER FIGURE 2014
THE ROTTWEILER FIGURE 2014

 

THE BIG GUY 2014
THE BIG GUY 2014

 

THE AFGHAN PRINCESS 2014
THE AFGHAN PRINCESS 2014

 

THE MINIATURE SCHNAUZER FIGURE 2014
THE MINIATURE SCHNAUZER FIGURE 2014

We love the beautifully done ears and tail.

BELLA AND THE BOXER 2014
BELLA AND THE BOXER 2014

Bella, the Frenchie, and the Boxer (rear) were back this season but just twirl in place by the Christmas tree.  In 2013, they twirled and skated all around the Christmas Tree.

THE BOXER 2014
THE BOXER 2014

The twirling Boxer’s docked tail shows just below his winter vest.

THE AMAZING GREEN STOCKTON STREET 2014
THE AMAZING GREEN STOCKTON STREET 2014

Underground construction of a new transit line has closed Stockton Street in the Union Square area, so it was covered with artificial turf for the holiday season, although there is cross traffic on the intersecting streets.  Who thought we’d ever be walking down the middle of Stockton Street on a Friday afternoon?

 

NEIMAN MARCUS 2014

Stockton and Geary — an irresistible photo spot facing the Neiman Marcus Christmas tree.  The store is on the lot of the long gone landmark City of Paris department store where an interior  rotunda featured a very tall tree during the holiday season.

UNION SQUARE, SAN FRANCISCO , JANUARY 2, 2015
UNION SQUARE, SAN FRANCISCO , JANUARY 2, 2015

Finally, the huge Christmas tree in iconic Union Square and the seasonal ice skating rink with the Zamboni at work.

THE END – 2014

AKC GR Resources: Wow, Can I Get a Copy of That?

Now here’s a booth to get excited about!

AKC Dog Lovers

By Patty Van Sicklen, AKC Legislative Analyst

DeedNotBreedThat was a frequent question by visitors to the AKC Government Relations booth at the 2014 AKC/Eukanuba National Championship in Orlando, Florida.

We’re glad you asked!  The AKC Government Relations (GR) department provides a variety of materials on legislative and regulatory issues that affect dogs and dog owners—available right on the AKC website for you to view, download and print.  Click here for a complete list of resources.

If you need:

  • Data on the positive economic impact of AKC dog shows
  • Issue analyses on hot topics to discuss with your lawmakers
  • Handouts on effective advocacy and public outreach to share at your next club meeting
  • Customizable letters to the editor

It’s all there and more.  And if you’re interested in information on a specific issue, such as the negative effects of mandatory spay/neuter laws, ideas on how to build support for a public…

View original post 148 more words