San Francisco’s Animal Control and Welfare Commission is renewing efforts to ban pet sales in the city, which has been extended to include goldfish, tropical fish and guppies in an effort to raise awareness of the plight of even the smallest of animals who are raised inhumanely and to discourage impulse buys of pets.
Last year a ban on the sale of puppies, kittens and other small animals was proposed in hopes of increasing adoptions and dropping euthanasia rates, but a decision was put off and the issue was scrapped altogether.
This year’s proposal comes after a year of study and was expanded to include breeders as well as pet stores to help protect pets, consumers and the environment.
“The pet trade is a multi-billion dollar industry that treats animals as commodities to be bought and sold for profit. This leads to suffering on a massive scale when animals are warehoused, bred for sale, denied socialization and basic veterinary care, and finally transported with minimal care. Animals from mills develop diseases creating public health problems. Importation of sick animals to SF is bad for SF animals. Buying animals from local breeders and adopting from rescue/shelters are healthier companion animal choices,” according to a statement from the commission from their meeting on June 9.
They also point out that the ban will address problems with taking animals from the wild, along with the problems that come with releasing domestic pets who are no longer wanted.
“Most fish in aquariums are either mass bred” under inhumane conditions “or taken from the wild,” commission member Philip Gerrie told the San Francisco Chronicle. That leads to “devastation of tropical fish from places like Southeast Asia.”
Some of the recommendations of the commission haven’t made any progress, but others have, including the ban on declawing cats in 2009. San Francisco also wouldn’t be the first city in California to ban pet sales. West Hollywood passed a ban last year, and was more recently joined by Los Angeles.
The ban does not in any way mean a ban on pets, it only means that people will need to choose alternative methods of bringing them home. According to the commission, this can include 1) Pet store adoptions events; 2) Pet store permanent adoption centers/partnerships; 3) Direct sale from small breeders; 4) Adoption from shelters such as Animal Care and Control and the SF/SPCA; 5) Adoption from animal rescue organizations.
Sign the petition showing your support of the ban and the promotion of pet adoptions.
Photo Credit: Lachlan