The City of San Francisco has reviewed a proposal to ban the sale of all pets except fish. While it might be seen as extreme, there is some valid reasoning behind the proposal. If it had passed, San Francisco residents would have had to adopt a pet from an animal shelter or buy one from a store in another city. The problem at the center of the proposal is the impulse purchasing of pets by people who find they don’t want them not long after the purchase. Then they want to get rid of them and the poor animals wind up left at shelters where they are euthanized. Reportedly the problem is not so much abandoned cats and dogs, as it is small animals like hamsters. Hamsters are the number one euthanized animal at the city’s animal shelter.
The shelter’s small animal population currently is about six hamsters, nine rabbits, nine mice, nine rats, two guinea pigs, a bowl of goldfish, two birds, a leopard gecko, a bearded dragon and a hermit crab named Charlie. Thirty percent of small animals there are euthanized.
Pet store owners, of course, were very upset by the proposal, and said they might have gone out of business if it passed. Even though the proposal has not passed, at least it has drawn attention to the issue and perhaps there will be more caution surrounding the purchase of small animals like hamsters and gerbils. The original proposal was introduced as a way to reduce the number of puppies sold that came from puppy mills.
Some of the reactions to the proposal:
Sarah Han – “Perhaps those who might otherwise buy a pet new will see that shelter animals are the pets “they’ve been searching for all along.”
Michael Yaki – “And if they allow the sale of animals through Craigslist or the classifieds, are we going to see the establishment of pet store speakeasies to consummate the delivery of the live, but otherwise prohibited, goods?”
Jeff Blyskal – “Ban hamster sales only, and let the sale of other pets continue.”
What is your reaction to the proposal?
Image Credit: cdrussorusso