Florida Senate - 2020                                      SB 48
       By Senator Book
       32-00073A-20                                            202048__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to the declawing of cats; creating s.
    3         828.095, F.S.; defining terms; prohibiting a person
    4         from performing a declawing on a cat within this
    5         state; providing an exception; providing a civil
    6         penalty; providing that a veterinarian who performs a
    7         prohibited declawing is subject to disciplinary action
    8         by the Board of Veterinary Medicine; amending s.
    9         474.214, F.S.; providing that a veterinarian who
   10         performs a prohibited declawing is subject to certain
   11         disciplinary action; providing an effective date.
   13  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   15         Section 1. Section 828.095, Florida Statutes, is created to
   16  read:
   17         828.095Prohibition on the declawing of cats; penalty.—
   18         (1)DEFINITIONS.—As used in this section, the term:
   19         (a)“Declawing” means any of the following:
   20         1.An onychectomy, dactylectomy, phalangectomy, partial
   21  digital amputation, or any other surgical procedure by which a
   22  portion of a cat’s paw is amputated to remove the cat’s claw.
   23         2.A tendonectomy or another surgical procedure by which
   24  the tendons of a cat’s limbs, paws, or toes are cut or modified
   25  so that the cat’s claws cannot be extended.
   26         3.Any other procedure that prevents the normal functioning
   27  of a cat’s claws.
   28         (b)“Therapeutic purpose” means the necessity of addressing
   29  the physical medical condition of a cat, such as an existing or
   30  recurring illness, infection, disease, injury, or abnormal
   31  condition of the cat which compromises the cat’s health. The
   32  term does not include a cosmetic or an aesthetic reason or
   33  reasons of convenience for keeping or handling the cat.
   34         (2)PROHIBITION.—A person may not perform a declawing by
   35  any means on a cat within this state unless the procedure is
   36  necessary for a therapeutic purpose.
   37         (3)PENALTIES.—
   38         (a)A person, other than a veterinarian licensed under ch.
   39  474, who violates this section is subject to a civil penalty of
   40  up to $1,000 for each violation.
   41         (b)A veterinarian licensed under ch. 474 who violates this
   42  section is subject to disciplinary action by the Board of
   43  Veterinary Medicine pursuant to s. 474.214(2).
   44         Section 2. Paragraph (qq) is added to subsection (1) of
   45  section 474.214, Florida Statutes, and subsection (2) of that
   46  section is republished, to read:
   47         474.214 Disciplinary proceedings.—
   48         (1) The following acts shall constitute grounds for which
   49  the disciplinary actions in subsection (2) may be taken:
   50         (qq) Performing a declawing, as defined in s. 828.095,
   51  which is not necessary for a therapeutic purpose, as defined in
   52  s. 828.095.
   53         (2) When the board finds any applicant or veterinarian
   54  guilty of any of the grounds set forth in subsection (1),
   55  regardless of whether the violation occurred prior to licensure,
   56  it may enter an order imposing one or more of the following
   57  penalties:
   58         (a) Denial of certification for examination or licensure.
   59         (b) Revocation or suspension of a license.
   60         (c) Imposition of an administrative fine not to exceed
   61  $5,000 for each count or separate offense.
   62         (d) Issuance of a reprimand.
   63         (e) Placement of the veterinarian on probation for a period
   64  of time and subject to such conditions as the board may specify,
   65  including requiring the veterinarian to attend continuing
   66  education courses or to work under the supervision of another
   67  veterinarian.
   68         (f) Restricting the authorized scope of practice.
   69         (g) Imposition of costs of the investigation and
   70  prosecution.
   71         (h) Requiring the veterinarian to undergo remedial
   72  education.
   74  In determining appropriate action, the board must first consider
   75  those sanctions necessary to protect the public. Only after
   76  those sanctions have been imposed may the disciplining authority
   77  consider and include in its order requirements designed to
   78  rehabilitate the veterinarian. All costs associated with
   79  compliance with any order issued under this subsection are the
   80  obligation of the veterinarian.
   81         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2020.