Before the holiday break, I reported on the efforts of many–most notably the Coalition to Ban Ohio Dog Auctions, a registered political action committee–to outlaw dog auctions in Ohio.
Unfortunately, only 7,202 signatures were gathered–far short of the 120,700 signatures needed–to put before state legislators. The reason for the shortfall of signatures was time. Organizers behind this effort were competing with the historic November 3 presidential election.
The initiative will be re-launched on January 19, and supporters of the ban expect to get the required 120,700 needed signatures this time around. If you already signed the petition, you won’t need to sign again. If you have family members or friends living in Ohio, please tell them to support the Coalition to Ban Ohio Dog Auctions.
Why We Should Care
Most of the dogs sold at these auctions come from puppy mills where they are kept in wire cages and bred repeatedly to supply pet stores around the country, Internet sales, and the auction. Animal welfare activists report seeing ill, weak, dirty, injured, and genetically-flawed dogs at mills and at the auction, where cameras and cell phones are banned.
Members from the Coalition and signers from Geauga County will meet at the county’s humane shelter on January 25 to talk to State Senator Tim Grendell about supporting these efforts.
According to Mary O’Connor-Shaver of the Coalition to Ban Ohio Dog Auctions, “I am working with a number of concerned citizens through the Coalition to Ban Ohio Dog Auctions who are interested in submitting a ballot initiative, Ohio Dog Auctions Act, in 2011 which would ban dog raffles and auctions in the state of Ohio.”
“Over the past six months,” she continues, “we’ve had the good fortune to connect with many groups and individuals across the state (includes staff and volunteers from Cleveland Animal Protective League, Geauga Humane Society’s Rescue Village, and Lake Humane Society) who are committed to helping us succeed in this campaign.”
According to Animal Law Coalition, an animal welfare nonprofit, dog auctions are held primarily for backyard breeders and other puppy mill owners. Many of the dogs sold at these auctions have been over bred and have developed major medical and behavior problems.
The people involved in gathering signatures report that this time around looks good for their cause. They have more time to educate others and gather signatures to end dog auctions in Ohio.