Just Say No to Kennel License for Convicted Animal AbuserPosted by Jessica Blome, ALDF Staff Attorney on September 23, 2013
UPDATE: The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture denied John and Daniel Esh’s kennel license application late last week. Thank you to everyone who contacted Pennsylvania to protect the lives and advance the interest of animals through the legal system.
Today, ALDF sent a letter to Mr. Michael Pechart, Director of the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture’s Dog Law Enforcement Office. According to recent reports, Director Pechart is considering issuing a commercial kennel license to John Esh, a former commercial kennel owner with a long history of animal welfare and animal cruelty violations. In fact, just five years ago, Mr. Esh pled guilty to five summary offenses for animal cruelty and subsequently closed his kennel. Mr. Esh’s son, Daniel, has historically assisted Mr. Esh with the operation of his kennel. Daniel’s own license was revoked in 2010 after the Dog Law Enforcement Office documented repeated violations of regulations for proper ventilation, odor minimization, unsanitary conditions, and record keeping.
Issuing commercial kennel licenses to chronic violators of state animal welfare laws sends the wrong message to the regulated community. If violators only face small fines as a result of their behavior, then the incentive to cut corners at the expense of the health and safety of animals becomes too great. Any deterrent effect achieved by enforcement of the Dog Law in Pennsylvania to date will be undone with the single act of granting a commercial kennel license to John and Daniel Esh. That price is too high. The Dog Law Office must deny John and Daniel Esh’s application.