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Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection
Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis
Rule Subject:   Dog sellers program
Adm. Code Reference:   ATCP 16
Rules Clearinghouse #:   Not yet assigned
DATCP Docket #:     17-R-03
Rule Summary
This rule specifies requirements for persons to become licensed under the Wisconsin dog sellers and dog facility operators program. Among other things, this rule does all of the following:
General rule changes
- Updates statutory cross references.
- Adds statutory language to the rule or modifies the rule to reflect statutory language.
- Makes other minor modifications to the rule.
- Adds a definition of “dog” to clarify that the rule applies to domestic dogs and not dog hybrids.
- Modifies the definition of “dog dealer” to specifically include persons selling, or offering to sell, at least 25 dogs in a license year. This change makes the rule definition of “dog dealer” consistent with the statutory definition of “dog dealer”.
- Modifies the definition of “home custody provider” to apply only to an animal control facility or animal shelter.
License requirements
- Adds a note clarifying that because a license is not transferable between locations, a licensed entity that moves to a new location must apply for a new license prior to operating at the new location.
Record keeping requirements
- Clarifies that vaccination records must include the name of the vaccine manufacturer, the vaccine serial number and lot number, the date on which the vaccine was administered, and the name of the person who administered the vaccine. Currently this information must be provided on a certificate of veterinary inspection. Therefore, this information should also be maintained in the dog seller’s records.
Dog sale requirements
- Clarifies that when a dog is sold, the following information must be provided to the purchaser:
- A valid certificate of veterinary inspection.
- All vaccination records.
Certificate of veterinary inspection (CVI)
Whenever a person, who is required to be licensed as a dog seller or dog facility operator, sells a dog in this state, the dog must be accompanied by the dog’s vaccination records and CVI. The proposed rule makes the following modifications to the CVI requirement:
- Clarifies that a CVI must be on a form provided or approved by the Department. The current rule implies that only a CVI provided by the Department may be used. This clarification is consistent with CVI requirements specified under Wis. Admin. Code ch. ATCP 10.
- Clarifies that the veterinarian completing the CVI must list only those vaccinations administered by that veterinarian (or another veterinarian) if those vaccinations are properly documented. Currently, the rule implies that the dog’s entire vaccination record must be included on the CVI, regardless of who administered the vaccination, including the dog seller. Any vaccinations administered by the dog seller must be maintained in his or her record for that dog and may not be included on a CVI.
- Clarifies that all dogs imported to Wisconsin must have CVIs. The current rule implies that if a CVI accompanied a dog imported to this state, certain information from that CVI must be added to the CVI of a dog being sold.
- Clarifies when a CVI may be re-used. The current rule is confusing because the rule requires the name of the new seller to be updated on the CVI before it can be re-used. However, a CVI cannot be updated by anyone other than the veterinarian who originally completed it. This rule modification clarifies that in spite of the requirement that the name and address of the dog seller be on a CVI, the CVI may be re-used if it is valid in all other respects.
Age at which dogs may be sold
- Requires that a puppy be at least 7 weeks of age before it can be physically transferred to a buyer. The current rule conflicts with the language of the statute by allowing transfer of puppies under 7 weeks of age to occur if certain requirements were met. The proposed rule no longer allows that to occur. The proposed rule is now congruent with the state statute.
General dog care requirements
- The current rule requires that water containers, food containers, and the like be cleaned and sanitized as often as necessary but does not specify a minimum timeframe. This proposed rule retains the requirement these items must be cleaned and sanitized as often as necessary, but new language adds the additional requirement that these items be cleaned and sanitized at least once a week, at a minimum.
- Clarifies that each dog must be groomed as necessary to maintain the dog’s health, comfort, and welfare. This language is consistent with terminology used throughout the rule.
- Reorganizes the rule to clarify that certain provisions apply to dogs regardless of whether those dogs are kept indoors or outdoors, including:
- Whelping, nursery, and temporary dog enclosures are currently specified under the “Dogs kept indoors” section of the rule. While the rule specifies the requirements for these indoor enclosures, it is unclear whether these rules apply to outdoor enclosures as well. The rule clarifies the following:
1. Whelping enclosures must be indoors unless a variance is granted from the Department. Other enclosure requirements remain the same as the current rule.
2. Nursery enclosures must be indoors unless outdoor temperatures are adequate so as to not adversely affect the health of the puppies. The rule provides direction for maintaining adequate shade in the nursery during sunlight hours to prevent heat stress and avoid inclement weather. Other enclosure requirements remain the same as the current rule.
3. Temporary enclosures for one dog must be indoors unless meeting the same exception criteria as nursery enclosures. Other enclosure requirements remain the same as the current rule.
- Current requirements for run and exercise areas are specified under both the “Dogs kept indoors” and the “Dogs kept outdoors” sections of the rule. These requirements apply to both environments. The requirements for runs and exercise areas have been moved to “general dog care requirements” but remain the same as the current rule.
- Clarifies that primary enclosures must be structurally sound and maintained in good repair to protect the dog from injury. This reflects statutory language.
- Re-sequences the current primary enclosure measurement requirements that overlap in the current rule.
Dogs kept indoors
- Requires that an indoor facility be heated at a minimum of 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Dogs kept outdoors
Links to Admin. Code and Statutes in this Register are to current versions, which may not be the version that was referred to in the original published document.