senate Bill S2271

2013-2014 Legislative Session

Restricts the performance of surgical devocalization procedures on dogs and cats

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Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

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Actions

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 08, 2014 referred to agriculture
Jan 15, 2013 referred to agriculture

Co-Sponsors

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S2271 - Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A1204
Current Committee:
Senate Agriculture
Law Section:
Agriculture and Markets Law
Laws Affected:
Add §365-a, amd §374, Ag & Mkts L
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Sessions:
2011-2012: A3431A, A3431D, S6167C
2009-2010: A11684

S2271 - Bill Texts

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Restricts the performance of surgical devocalization procedures on dogs and cats.

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BILL NUMBER:S2271

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the agriculture and markets law, in
relation to restricting the performance of surgical devocalization
procedures on dogs and cats

PURPOSE: This bill will prohibit the devocalization of dogs and cats
unless there is a medical condition that requires the procedure.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section one of the bill creates
section 365-a in the agriculture and.markets law that prohibits the
devocalization of cats and dogs unless medically necessary.

Subsection two of the bill relates to circumstances where
devocalization surgery is allowed including treatment or relief from
an illness, disease or injury.

Subsection three of the bill relates to the record keeping regarding
the procedure with the municipality's clerk.

Subsection four of this bill relates to prohibiting the sale of a dog
or cat that has been surgically devocalized unless the buyer receives
a written notice of the surgery.

Subsection five of this bill relates to the definition of
devocalization.

Subsection six of this bill relates to the penalties associated with
the violation of section 365-a.

Section 2 of the bill allows the commissioner of agriculture and
markets and the commissioner of education to promulgate rules and
regulations to enforce this section.

JUSTIFICATION: The devocalization of animals is an invasive procedure
that involves the surgical removal of a dog or cat's vocal cords.
This procedure often leads to serious and long term respiratory and
throat ailments. It silences the dog or cat and prevents communication
between other animals and their owners.

This bill will outlaw "convenience" devocalization and restrict the
invasive surgery fox cases where it is medically necessary to treat or
relieve an illness or injury.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: S. 6167C of 2012

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after
it shall become law.

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                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  2271

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            January 15, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by Sen. GRISANTI -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Agriculture

AN ACT to  amend  the  agriculture  and  markets  law,  in  relation  to
  restricting  the  performance of surgical devocalization procedures on
  dogs and cats

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a new
section 365-a to read as follows:
  S 365-A. DEVOCALIZATION OF ANIMALS. 1. NO  PERSON  SHALL  PERFORM  THE
SURGICAL  DEVOCALIZATION  OF  A DOG OR CAT EXCEPT IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE
PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION.
  2. A. SURGICAL DEVOCALIZATION OF A DOG OR CAT SHALL BE PERFORMED  ONLY
BY  A  PERSON  LICENSED  AS  A  VETERINARIAN  IN  THIS  STATE  UNDER THE
PROVISIONS OF ARTICLE ONE HUNDRED THIRTY-FIVE OF THE EDUCATION LAW.
  B. SURGICAL DEVOCALIZATION OF A DOG OR CAT MAY BE PERFORMED ONLY  WHEN
THE  PROCEDURE  IS  MEDICALLY  NECESSARY  TO TREAT OR RELIEVE A PHYSICAL
ILLNESS, DISEASE OR INJURY OR CORRECT A CONGENITAL ABNORMALITY  SUFFERED
BY  THE  ANIMAL,  WHICH  PHYSICAL ILLNESS, DISEASE, INJURY OR CONGENITAL
ABNORMALITY IS CAUSING OR MAY REASONABLY CAUSE THE ANIMAL PHYSICAL  PAIN
OR HARM.
  3. A. ANY PERSON WHO PERFORMS A SURGICAL DEVOCALIZATION PROCEDURE ON A
DOG  OR CAT SHALL INCLUDE INFORMATION RELATED TO THE PROCEDURE INCLUDING
THE MEDICAL NECESSITY IN THE ANIMAL'S TREATMENT  RECORD  AS  DEFINED  IN
SECTION SIXTY-SEVEN HUNDRED FOURTEEN OF THE EDUCATION LAW.
  B.  ANY PERSON WHO PERFORMS A DEVOCALIZATION PROCEDURE ON A DOG OR CAT
SHALL REPORT THE NUMBER IN THE AGGREGATE OF ALL SUCH PROCEDURES  TO  THE
COMMISSIONER  OF  EDUCATION  ANNUALLY  ON OR BEFORE MARCH THIRTIETH. THE
DEPARTMENT SHALL MAINTAIN ALL NOTICES RECEIVED  UNDER  THIS  SUBDIVISION
FOR FOUR YEARS FROM THE DATE OF RECEIPT.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD00470-01-3

S. 2271                             2

  4.  AS  USED IN THIS SECTION, "DEVOCALIZATION" MEANS A SURGICAL PROCE-
DURE ON THE LARYNX OR VOCAL CORDS OF AN ANIMAL  INTENDED  TO  CAUSE  THE
REDUCTION  OR  ELIMINATION  OF  VOCAL SOUNDS PRODUCED BY THAT ANIMAL AND
INCLUDES PROCEDURES COMMONLY REFERRED TO AS "DEBARKING", "SILENCING"  OR
"BARK SOFTENING".
  5.  A.  ANY  PERSON  WHO KNOWINGLY PERFORMS, OR KNOWINGLY CAUSES TO BE
PERFORMED, THE SURGICAL DEVOCALIZATION OF A DOG OR CAT IN  VIOLATION  OF
THE  PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION SHALL BE GUILTY OF A CLASS B MISDEMEANOR
PUNISHABLE BY IMPRISONMENT FOR A PERIOD OF NOT MORE THAN NINETY DAYS  OR
BY  A  FINE  NOT TO EXCEED FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS OR BY BOTH SUCH FINE AND
IMPRISONMENT.
  B. ANY VETERINARIAN WHO KNOWINGLY PERFORMS A  SURGICAL  DEVOCALIZATION
PROCEDURE  IN  VIOLATION  OF  THE  PROVISIONS  OF  THIS SECTION SHALL BE
SUBJECT TO THE REVOCATION OR SUSPENSION OF HIS OR HER  LICENSE  PURSUANT
TO ARTICLE ONE HUNDRED THIRTY OF THE EDUCATION LAW.
  S  2.  Paragraph  a of subdivision 8 of section 374 of the agriculture
and markets law, as amended by chapter 594 of the laws of 2003 and  such
subdivision as renumbered by chapter 479 of the laws of 2009, is amended
to read as follows:
  a.  In  addition to any other penalty provided by law, upon conviction
for any violation of section  three  hundred  fifty-one,  three  hundred
fifty-three,  three  hundred fifty-three-a, three hundred fifty-three-b,
three hundred fifty-five, three hundred fifty-six, three hundred  fifty-
nine,  three  hundred  sixty,  three  hundred  sixty-one,  three hundred
sixty-five, THREE HUNDRED SIXTY-FIVE-A or three hundred  sixty-eight  of
this article, the convicted person may, after a duly held hearing pursu-
ant  to  paragraph  f  of  this  subdivision, be ordered by the court to
forfeit, to a duly incorporated society for the prevention of cruelty to
animals or a duly incorporated humane society or authorized agents ther-
eof, the animal or animals which are the basis of the  conviction.  Upon
such  an  order  of  forfeiture, the convicted person shall be deemed to
have relinquished all rights to the animals which are the basis  of  the
conviction, except those granted in paragraph d of this subdivision.
  S  3. The commissioner of agriculture and markets and the commissioner
of education are authorized and directed to promulgate and implement all
rules, regulations and standards they  respectively  deem  necessary  to
enforce  the  provisions  of this act on or before the effective date of
this act.
  S 4. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day  after  it  shall
have become a law.

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