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Posted on 12/09/2009 in Your Dog, Your Rights.

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Proposed Rulemaking by the Pennsylvania Canine Health Board

The Pennsylvania Canine Health Board was created under section 221 of the Pennsylvania Dog Law to create specific standards that will protect the health and well being of dogs in commercial kennels (Class C Kennels). The Canine Health Board has proposed some very stringent guidelines for ventilation, lighting, and flooring for commercial kennels. The regulations are subject to public comment and regulatory review prior to final publication of the proposed regulations. Following is an overview of the proposal.

  • When the temperature is 85║F, there must be sufficient ventilation to reduce the temperature, and dogs may not be present in portions of the indoor kennel where the temperature is 86║F or higher.
  • When the temperature is between 50 - 75║F, the humidity must be 40-60%. The humidity must be measured at standing shoulder level of 10% of the dogs in kennel, and may not be measured within 30 minutes of completion of active cleaning.
  • When the temperature is above 75║F, the humidity must be between 1%-50%, and must follow the same measurement guidelines as above.
  • Again following the same measuring guidelines, the ammonia levels must be less than 10ppm.
  • Carbon monoxide levels must be maintained below detectable levels.
  • Kennels must have windows, doors, skylights, or other openings in the event of a malfunction of the ventilation system, and must contact the Bureau of Dog Law for consultation in the event of such a malfunction.
  • Particulate matter in the air should be below 10 milligrams per meter cubed.
  • Air changes must be 8-20 changes of 100% fresh air per hour.
  • Dogs may not exhibit any of the following signs associated with poor ventilation: excessive panting, elevated body temperature, active avoidance of areas of the kennel, shivering, huddling of dogs 12 weeks of age or older, mucous dripping from the nose, red or crusty eyes or nose, runny eyes, blindness, coughing or sneezing, moist areas of hair, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, vomiting, listlessness, presence of blood, or death.
  • The air in the facility may not carry an excessive dog odor, other noxious odors, stale air, moisture condensation on surfaces, or lack of air flow.
  • Finally, the air must be filtered with small particle nonozone producing air filters.
Natural Lighting:

  • Dogs must have exposure to light from natural sources.
  • The minimum combined total of net glazed area of external openings through which natural light passes may not be less that 8% of the floor space.
  • Dogs must be protected from excessive light.
  • Outdoor areas must have shade areas large enough to protect all dogs in the area.
  • If the kennel has a waiver for indoor exercise, each primary enclosure must have natural light and full spectrum lighting must be provided all day in areas housing dogs.
Artificial light:

  • Artificial indoor lighting must provide full spectrum lighting between 50-80 foot candles at standing shoulder level of dogs and provide 1-5 foot candles during the night time.
  • Artificial lighting must coincide with the natural diurnal cycle.
  • Lights may not have a visible flicker, and may not be placed where dogs can touch a light, fixture, bulb, switch or cord.

The impact of these proposed regulations is that many commercial kennels (those that sell more than 60 dogs per year) may have to conduct major renovations. The technical and stringent lighting and ventilation requirements may require professional engineers to correctly evaluate kennels in order to ensure they meet standards.