Animal agriculture was watching the state of Missouri Tuesday as voters decided on Proposition B, which establishes new rules for dog breeding in a state that has drawn national attention for a high number of so-called "puppy mills." The measure received narrow approval.
The measure requires anyone with more than 10 breeding dogs to meet certain standards for housing, food and veterinary care. Owners will be limited to no more than 50 breeding dogs. The wording of the proposition was somewhat vague, leaving a lot up to interpretation. Now, the question is, is agriculture next?
Missouri animal agricultural groups and the Missouri Farm Bureau opposed Proposition B, citing the fact that Missouri already has laws on the books dealing with animal care in the dog industry. Animal rights groups, such as the Humane Society of the United States, considered the vote a victory. St. Louis, Kansas City and Boot Heel voters showed strong support for the proposal, while the rest of the state voted against it.