July 4, 2016

I’m writing you today as we celebrate the birth of our wonderful nation and the establishments of our rights as citizens to alert you about those who wish to take away our rights to own and breed basset hounds along with All domesticated animals. It’s an important topic for all of us to be aware of and possibly help prevent.

In recent years animal rights (AR) organizations have been working to limit our rights to own and breed dogs. They also attack rescue groups and no kill shelters. Ingrid Newkirk, the founder of PETA, began her career in what she called “animal welfare” killing animals at the Washington Humane Society, a shelter with regressive policies at the time. She has stated that she went into work early to perform the job. According to her own words she killed “a thousand of them, sometimes dozens every day.” Animal rights organizations such as PETA and certain “humane” societies, both national and local in scope, have huge war chests for lobbying and deep pockets to influence the upcoming elections. For example, in 2015 the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) “invested” $66 million in “advocacy and public policy” initiatives. PETA spends less than one percent of its multi-million dollar budget actually helping animals. The agenda of these organizations has been clear for many years.

“We strongly discourage any further breeding of companion animals, including pedigreed or purebred dogs and cats.” 

Animals’ Agenda magazine in November 1987

They still maintain this as part of their agenda today and want to put an end to all domesticated animals. 

You’ve seen their ads on television. These groups solicit help for "poor homeless animals” when in reality the people who donate end up funding an agenda they would never condone. Very few Americans truly want radical changes to end the human-animal relationship altogether. To understand the true agenda of these enormous animal rights organizations one needs to examine the beliefs of its leaders, not the slick media ads for donations that claim to be for animal welfare.

"One day, we would like an end to … the breeding of animals. [Dogs] would pursue their natural lives in the wild … they would have full lives, not wasting at home for someone to come home in the evening and pet them and then sit there and watch TV.”

“Pet ownership is an absolutely abysmal situation brought about by human manipulation.”

"In the end, I think it would be lovely if we stopped this whole notion of pets altogether.”


”If they want companionship, they should seek it with their own kind.”

“The bottom line is that people don’t have the right to manipulate or to breed dogs and cats... If people want toys, they should buy inanimate objects.”

— Ingrid Newkirk, Co-founder of PETA

“We have no ethical obligation to preserve the different breeds of livestock produced through selective breeding …One generation and out. We have no problems with the extinction of domestic animals. They are creations of human selective breeding.”

“I don’t want to see another dog or cat born.”

— Wayne Pacelle, HSUS CEO and President

Make no mistake, their ultimate goal is to end ALL human use and contact with animals. They are pushing hard with all that money to hire the best attorneys and are pressing for legislation to advance their agenda.

We need to stay on top of what is happening or we may lose our right to have basset hounds as members of our families. When you vote this year keep in mind that some law makers want to take that right away from you. 

Here in California we have been successful in fending off very limiting legislation on dog ownership and breeding at the state level several times in recent years. But now the AR extremists are methodically taking away rights locally, at the community and county levels. Many of you may not even be aware of the local laws that limit your right to breed and own animals.

When Pam and I lived in Simi Valley, for example, the total number of dogs and/or cats that could be owned per dwelling anywhere in Ventura County was four. In the city breeding was against the law. If Pam and I hadn’t had our co-breeding relationship with Heather at the time our breeding would have been illegal. After we moved from Ventura County they passed a mandatory spay and neuter law which required all dogs and cats, with few exceptions, to be altered at six months. Even though veterinarians and rescue groups pointed out that there was scientific/medical proof that this was too early to spay or neuter dogs the law was passed. Similar laws are cropping all over California and the country.

Just recently communities near us in San Diego County were considering laws related to dogs. The San Marcos City Council was looking at a proposed ordinance which would define hobby breeders, limiting them to only three “breeding dogs, cats and/or rabbits. The law was unclear as to how a breeding dog, cat or rabbit would be identified and what would happen to resident breeders over that limit. The La Mesa City Council recently considered a proposal to alter the number of dogs allowed per single family dwelling. No mention was made as to what would happen to those who currently have more in their homes.

Many people are not aware of the newest national rules governing dog breeding. The Department of Agriculture has placed restrictions on breeding of most domestic animals and responsible breeders are not excluded. If any breeder exceeds the arbitrary limits placed on breeding by the Department of Agriculture the regulations required for breeding dogs would be impossible to meet for someone breeding at home. If those arbitrary limits are reduced those of us in our club who breed bassets will be forced to stop.

I understand that a lot of this is difficult to understand by most of you. What you do need to know is that our rights to breed and own animals are being taken away bit by bit until they will be gone forever. The overall strategy of the Animal Rights groups is to find extreme, ridiculous, and offensive positions, and have legislation enacted in order to constantly redefine the edge of what’s considered “acceptable” by our society. The limits they propose for laws and rules today are designed to be such that they can be made stricter in the future. While some of the laws that are passed seem to be reasonable on the surface today remember the source for these laws is Animal Rights extremists pressing for their ultimate agenda.

What’s going on in your neighborhood? Do you know what limits are law or rules where you live? Do you follow national legislation and rule changes related to dog breeding and ownership? Some of you might be surprised.

I must say that I am not at all political. Unfortunately the animal extremists are. They are very busy trying their best to restrict and deny breeding and animal ownership. It’s time we start fighting back before it’s too late. 

The American Kennel Club (AKC) has finally started to fight back against those who are attempting to restrict our rights to own and breed dogs. The AKC’s Political Action Committee (PAC) is a non-partisan committee that supports election of key legislators who will stand with us to protect our rights and our future. The AKC also has a Government Relations department that monitors legislation related to dogs. They attempt to keep people up to date on what is happening in their communities, states and our nation. Here in California we have the California Federation of Dog Clubs. The CFoDC is an association of dog clubs and owners in California dedicated to promoting animal welfare, supporting responsible animal ownership and strengthening the bond between humans and animals. They help fight against legislation that limits our rights as responsible breeders and owners here in California. 

What can we do? First of all investigate any organization that you donate money to. There is plenty of information on the Internet from respected watch groups that you can easily find. If you do want to help animals give to those organizations that are truly doing what you want them to do. Become aware of rules, ordinances and laws that might limit your love and ownership of animals. Again the Internet is an excellent source on what is happening.

You can sit back and watch your rights to own your bassets and other animals disappear or you can get more involved. The AKC PAC is currently looking for donations in their efforts to elect politicians this year who respect dog ownership. You can also subscribe to the email notices from AKC’s Government Relations Department through the AKC website. I’m planning to propose that our club support the California Federation of Dog Clubs by becoming a member. They also take individual contributions.

No one should have the power to take away our rights to own and love our bassets. It’s up to us to see that we retain that right. We live in a wonderful country that affords our citizens many freedoms. But, that doesn’t mean that the AR movement has the freedom to dictate their beliefs on the rest of us.  

“There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty.“

— John Adams

“Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.” 

— Thomas Jefferson

I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts.

I appeal to you again to constantly bear in mind that with you, and not with politicians, not with Presidents, not with office-seekers, but with you, is the question, "Shall the Union and shall the liberties of this country be preserved to the latest generation?"   

— Abraham Lincoln

"But you must remember, my fellow-citizens, that eternal vigilance by the people is the price of liberty, and that you must pay the price if you wish to secure the blessing.  It behooves you, therefore, to be watchful in your States as well as in the Federal Government."  

— Andrew Jackson

I hope you had a wonderful holiday celebrating our nation’s independence and our freedoms. Please give all your bassets some special love and attention after reading this. They are all very special.

Best Wishes,

Don Bullock, President & Webmaster

Basset Hound Club of Southern California, Inc.

We MUST Protect our Freedoms

by Don Bullock

The following is a letter that I sent to the membership of the Basset Hound Club of Southern California as their President and Webmaster. It was designed to educate the club's membership for the upcoming elections about issues related to dog ownership and breeding. I feel it is appropriate to reprint this letter here for those of you who follow Woebgon Bassets.