Posts tagged pet store reform

It finally happend in LA: Dog, cat and rabbit sales banned at pet stores

Great! Fantastic! That’s amazing! Imagine all the animals saved! Those were the responses I’ve heard as I spread the word that LA  banned the sale of dogs, cats and rabbits in retail outlets today (ref: Los Angeles Times).

And, naturally, I agree.

You don’t have to wait for election day to make progress, and that’s what they did in LA.  Now, only animals for adoption can be provided through retail outlets.  This is a move to start solving the pet homelessness problem at the source!

Overflow of kittens at a Pacific NW shelterLA is a huge market for pets stores who frequently sell dogs that are trending as popular, such as Chihuahuas after the release of Legally Blonde.   There are so many animals homeless in LA that rescue groups all over the country actually export dogs out of LA to find them homes elsewhere.

And the relief that shelter workers will get is just one more reason that banning the retail sale of animals is so important.  Imagine each day you are faced with hundreds and even thousands of homeless animals, many who will be euthanized. This is a quote from one LA newspaper article earlier this month:

“In the 2011-12 fiscal year, city animal shelters took in more than 57,000 animals — 35,405 dogs and 21,883 cats — and euthanized 25 percent of the dogs and 57 percent of cats.” — ref: Daily News LA

Congratulations to Councilman Paul Koretz, Los Angeles Department of Animal Services and all the animal advocates and organizations who pressed for this ban.

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New Westminster council considering a ban on retail pet sales thanks to…

Kathy Powelson and the Paws for Hope Animal Foundation (ref: Royal City Record).

It’s amazing what can happen when we let our elected leaders know exactly what our communities need (especially when it doesn’t cost the city to make these changes).  With courage and tenacity, Powelson and her fellow advocates are speaking up for what many people believe is a good step to help end the euthanasia of 3-4 million cats and dogs that end up in North American animal shelters every year (ref:  HSUS, American Humane Association).

Whenever I have spoken to representatives or leaders of the cities where we live and suggest that we ban the sale of animals, the most common response I’ve gotten is “Well, I’ve never thought about it” or “No one has ever suggested it.”

So thank you Kathy for not only suggesting it, but advocating for significant change to help animals.

Check out Paws for Hope Animal Foundation at pawsforhope.org.

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Our Kindred Spirits in Malaysia

An article in a Malaysian independent paper carried this letter from a reader.  It’s an articulate explanation of backyard breeders, chained dogs and what action should be taken to help Malaysian dogs and protect people.  Please take a moment to see the article here.

Also, since it’s always nice to connect with our overseas friends, check out this great website on not-for-profit agencies in Malaysia called Hati.org.my.  Here is their listing of animal welfare groups in Malaysia.

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Toronto bans retail sales of dogs and cats!

A second city in Canada has banned the retail sale of dogs (and cats too!) effectively ending retail pet sales of puppies and kittens in the city limits.  But not just any city, … Canada’s largest city, Toronto, home to more than 2.5 million people.

In a move that helps solidify the future of pets stores and the kind of business they can provide in the region, there is no excuse any longer for cities in Canada, the US and across the world to not make this practical and ethical change in their city bylaws.

Media coverage links of this major municipal decision is provided by Helen Savkovic.  (Thanks Helen! )

Global News
Canadian Business
National Post
All Voices
The Gazette
City News Toronto
CTV Toronto
Globe and Mail
Helen’s favorite quotes from media coverage? 
“I think we’re the second major municipality in Canada to do this, so that from coast to coast, we’re going to protect dogs across this country,” said a jubilant Councillor Glenn De Baeremaeker, who had championed the partial ban.
“For all intents and purposes we’ve shut the taps to the puppy mills at retail locations in Toronto. We won’t eliminate them because people will still sell at Kajiji and there is other ways to sell puppy mill dogs, so those evil people will continue but there’s a lot less demand for their product,” said Mr. De Baeremaeker. “Eventually, hopefully, there won’t be any puppy mills at all.”
My favorite quote?
“It really slams the door closed on people who mass produce animals for profit,” said Mr. De Baeremaeker, adding it should help to stop sales of such animals at flea markets as well.  ~ Globe & Mail


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Cowabunga! Glendale passes ban on retail sale of dogs and cats!

In an open and shut case, the Glendale City Council in California passed a ban the sale of dogs and cats in retail outlets, thereby pinching off the flow of money to puppy and kitten mills and ending impulse retail animals sales that so frequency leads to pet surrender and pet abandonment.  We owe a whole bunch of thanks to the Companion Animal Protection Society (CAPS), who also ushered in the West Hollywood ban and has helped many other cities do the same.

Update!  I just learned that a small group of activists got the puppy sale ban ball rolling in Glendale. Prior to this vote, Christy Schilling, resident and activist, approached the owner of Pet Rush, a pet store selling dogs in Glendale, and encouraged them to stop selling puppy mill dogs.  Pet Rush owner Rene Karapedian choose to stop selling dogs in favor of helping rescued animals find homes.  Both Schilling and Karapedian indicated their support for the ban for council. (Ref:  Examiner, and a special thanks to Andrea (reader) for letting me know about the team effort (see comments).)

Well done CAPS, Christy, Rene and Glendale!  Let’s make sure Seattle isn’t far behind!

Click here to send a thank you note to Glendale councilors for their bravery to tackle a tough issue.

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Vancouver Sun highlights puppy issues

I’ve always enjoyed the “Puppy Love” column by Kim Pemberton in the Vancouver Sun.  Here is a great article — part of a series — about the better option to ‘adopt don’t shop’. See here.

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Suffolk County (NY) has the makings of a better law for puppies

This quote made my day!  It’s from the North Shore News in Suffolk County NY.

“It’s time Suffolk County joins a national trend and bans these businesses that support the puppy mill industry.”

I’m sure glad to hear this called a ‘national trend’.   Suffolk County legislator Jon Cooper has proposed a law to ban the retail sale of dog in pet stores.  See article here.  The proposed law will take some time for consideration, and the public is asked to participate.   Here is a web comment from that same article inviting input.   Three cheers for Suffolk Co. and Jon Cooper!

Comment from Jon Cooper (reprinted):

Thank you for posting this story about yesterday’s public hearing on my “puppy mill” bill. If any of your readers would like to testify in support of this bill at the next public hearing, they can call my district office for full details at (631) 854-4500. They can also email me at jon.cooper@suffolkcountyny.gov. The hearing will take place at the next General Meeting of the County Legislature in Hauppauge and is scheduled for 6:30 PM on Tuesday, August 2nd.

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BC Court upholds Richmond’s ban on the sale of dogs in pet stores!

Bebe and Spider at the Richmond Animal Shelter

A new day has arrived for the ongoing fight to stop the retail sale of dogs in pet stores and reduce the number of unwanted pets in Richmond, in Canada and in North America! On April 14, Justice John Savage ruled that the  City of Richmond had good reason to enact this bylaw, and that it was a justified action to take to reduce the large number of abandoned pets in the city.   See the Richmond Review article, but it’s below as well.

Also see our updated website page:  Puppy Ban Media Coverage.

Court upholds Richmond’s ban

on retail sale of dogs

By Matthew Hoekstra – Richmond Review
Published: April 15, 2011 3:00 PM
Updated: April 15, 2011 3:43 PM

A B.C. Supreme Court has dismissed a petition launched by three Richmond pet stores seeking to quash a bylaw restricting the sale of dogs in retail outlets.

In a judgement released yesterday, Justice John Savage ruled Richmond council’s decision to ban the retail sale of dogs was a reasonable move to reduce unwanted and abandoned pets.

Last fall city council approved the bylaw, which is set to take effect later this month. That raised the ire of Pet Habitat, PJ’s Pets and Pets Wonderland, which jointly launched legal action against the city.

Pets Wonderland sells approximately 150 dogs per year, netting the store $700 to $2,500 each, while PJ’s sells approximately 50 dogs annually.

In the lead-up to the approval of the bylaw, the city received plenty of written submissions, including two petitions: a 2,160-signature petition supporting the ban, another 1,174-signature petition opposing it.

The pet stores argued the bylaw wouldn’t reduce unwanted and abandoned dogs and Richmond acted in bad faith. The judge disagreed.

“In my view Richmond had a valid municipal purpose in enacting the bylaw, reducing the number of unwanted and abandoned dogs in Richmond,” wrote Savage.

Pet stores also argued the bylaw discriminated against them because breeders, kennels and others are still able to sell through the Internet. They further stated there was no clear evidence relating to the impulse buying of pets, which the city sought to stop.

“People do most things on impulse including getting married. There is no connection established that people who do things on impulse change their minds. To the contrary decisions made very quickly can be every bit as good as decisions made cautiously and deliberately,” argued the petition.

But Justice Savage ruled the bylaw would only be discriminatory if the bylaw didn’t act within the public interest.

“Here council distinguished between businesses which made it relatively easy to purchase a dog and those which made it more difficult. There was some evidence

that it was easier to purchase a dog from a pet store; it was possible to buy the dog and take it home the same day with little screening. Breeders and kennels had stricter criteria and often there was a delay between choosing a dog and taking it home.”

Savage concluded the pet stores “overstated their case.”

“The decision to prohibit the sale of dogs in pet stores falls within a range of acceptable outcomes that are defensible with regard to the facts and law. There is a rational connection between the bylaw and its objective.”

The bylaw, initiated by Coun. Ken Johnston, goes into effect April 30.

See: http://www.bclocalnews.com/richmond_southdelta/richmondreview/news/119949494.html

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Winnipeg looking to right some wrongs for pets

The City of Winnipeg, Manitoba is considering a ban on the sale of dogs in pet stores to stop the financial support of puppy-mills by local retail outlets. Check out this CTV article. (A special thanks to my friend Helen for sending me this information!)

Winnipeg has quite a few stores that sell animals, including puppies, so this law would go a long way to stopping the range of problems caused by retail sales of puppies and other animals.  Amongst many pet stores, a Petland chain store is also located in Winnipeg.  Petland is notorious for their sale of puppy-mill bred dogs (see: US Humane Society) and their connection with Hunte Corporation.  Furthermore, in 2008, the US Humane Society sued Petland and the Hunte Corporation for racketeering and misleading customers.  A quote from the lawsuit is below:

The lawsuit, filed in federal district court in Phoenix, alleges that Petland violated the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), and numerous state consumer protection laws by misleading thousands of consumers across the country into believing that the puppies sold in Petland stores are healthy and come from high-quality breeders.  Read more…

In 2008, two former Petland franchisees sued Petland and the Hunte Corporation for their horrific business practices (see:  Animal Law Coalition).

The lawsuit, filed in federal district court in Phoenix, alleges that Petland violated the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), and numerous state consumer protection laws by misleading thousands of consumers across the country into believing that the puppies sold in Petland stores are healthy and come from high-quality breeders.

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Lake Worth, Florida bans the retail sale of dogs and cats! Yippee!!!

Buster Brown at Palm Beach Animal Care and Control

A town in Florida, Lake Worth, has become one of a growing number of US and Canadian cities to ban the sale of dogs and cats in pet stores thereby stopping the flow of animals from puppy and kitten mills to retail outlets.

 

Find all the details in the Palm Beach Post News.  However, here are a few quotes from that article.

It prohibits the sale of dogs or cats in Lake Worth unless the animal has been bred and reared on the property of the seller.

The ordinance also requires the posting of signs explaining where the dogs and cats were bred and reared. Buyers must be given a “certificate of source” telling where the dog or cat came from.

Goals include promoting the adoption of dogs and cats and reducing the sale of mill-bred animals that perpetuate the pet overpopulation problem, said Varela, a veterinarian.

Palm Beach County Animal Care & Control euthanized 3,686 dogs and 10,176 cats during the year that ended Sept. 30.

The ordinance does not prohibit licensed animal-rescue groups from selling or otherwise transferring ownership of dogs or cats.

Don Anthony, spokesman for the Animal Rights Foundation of Florida, said Lake Worth’s pet-sale ordinance will be the first of its kind in Florida and one of a handful of similar ordinances nationwide.

“We’re encouraging them to take the step and become a shining example,” Anthony said.

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