New regulations for animal shelters under consideration

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A proposal to impose a host of new regulations on animal shelters and rescue organizations in Massachusetts has met stiff resistance, with many rescue organizations arguing that the restrictions will create more problems than they solve and carry financial burdens that could force some rescue groups out of business.

The state’s Division of Animal Health, which has proposed the measures, said the broad goal of the regulations is to control the spread of disease and that the new regulations are not nearly as drastic as they’re being portrayed.

Many of the new regulations deal with the transferring of ownership that occurs when an animal is adopted. The proposed regulations would ban the adoption of animals with contagious diseases or serious aggressive tendencies, and require all animals to come with a disclosure statement detailing any medical or behavioral issues.

The comment period for the proposal has been extended until Oct. 8.

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