Los Angeles has made a bit of doggy history by becoming the largest city in the USA to ban the sale of specific species of animals that came from commercial breeders. That means that no pet store can sell dogs, cats, or rabbits that aren’t from a rescue or shelter.
The ban is designed to stop pet shops from getting their animals from puppy mills, as well as to help find homes for all the animals who are currently homeless in the city.
According to the LA Times blog, Elizabeth Oreck, working for Best Friends Animal Society, led the legislative effort. About the animals who will no longer be allowed to be sold in the city, Oreck said, “They’re inbred, they’re overbred, they’re irresponsibly bred.”
If you’re not familiar with puppy mills, imagine a place where dogs are bred over and over again to produce purebred dogs that can be sold for sometimes thousands of dollars. To maximize profits, the puppies are often kept in tiny wire cages and neglected before they are shipped across the country to pet stores. In other words, these facilities place profits above the welfare of the animals. And the puppies are the lucky ones. The mothers who are impregnated over and over again suffer the most.
Obviously, not everyone is happy about the ban. Local pet store owners, many who deny getting their dogs from puppy mills, think it’s unfair.
We bet those who see dogs euthanized each and every day at the shelters think it’s pretty fair for those animals. Why breed more dogs when there are so many who need homes?
People will still be allowed to buy animals directly from breeders. However, if a pet store is caught selling dogs from a breeder, they will be fined a first-time penalty of $250 and may face misdemeanor charges. We hope they choose to sell rescue animals instead. There is certainly no shortage.