Florida Senate - 2020                               CS for SB 48
       By the Committee on Agriculture; and Senator Book
       575-02755-20                                            202048c1
    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         (c)Each incident in which a cat is declawed or partially
   45  declawed in violation of this section constitutes a separate
   46  violation.
   47         Section 2. Paragraph (qq) is added to subsection (1) of
   48  section 474.214, Florida Statutes, and subsection (2) of that
   49  section is republished, to read:
   50         474.214 Disciplinary proceedings.—
   51         (1) The following acts shall constitute grounds for which
   52  the disciplinary actions in subsection (2) may be taken:
   53         (qq) Performing a declawing, as defined in s. 828.095,
   54  which is not necessary for a therapeutic purpose, as defined in
   55  s. 828.095.
   56         (2) When the board finds any applicant or veterinarian
   57  guilty of any of the grounds set forth in subsection (1),
   58  regardless of whether the violation occurred prior to licensure,
   59  it may enter an order imposing one or more of the following
   60  penalties:
   61         (a) Denial of certification for examination or licensure.
   62         (b) Revocation or suspension of a license.
   63         (c) Imposition of an administrative fine not to exceed
   64  $5,000 for each count or separate offense.
   65         (d) Issuance of a reprimand.
   66         (e) Placement of the veterinarian on probation for a period
   67  of time and subject to such conditions as the board may specify,
   68  including requiring the veterinarian to attend continuing
   69  education courses or to work under the supervision of another
   70  veterinarian.
   71         (f) Restricting the authorized scope of practice.
   72         (g) Imposition of costs of the investigation and
   73  prosecution.
   74         (h) Requiring the veterinarian to undergo remedial
   75  education.
   77  In determining appropriate action, the board must first consider
   78  those sanctions necessary to protect the public. Only after
   79  those sanctions have been imposed may the disciplining authority
   80  consider and include in its order requirements designed to
   81  rehabilitate the veterinarian. All costs associated with
   82  compliance with any order issued under this subsection are the
   83  obligation of the veterinarian.
   84         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2020.