Replace Puppy Mill Pets for Sale with Shelter Animals for AdoptionPosted by Stephanie Ulmer, Guest Blogger on June 30, 2011
Citing growing sentiment against puppy and kitten mills that has led a number of states and communities to adopt legislation regulating these mills, and the stores that provide an outlet for animals bred in substandard conditions, Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Koretz introduced a measure recently seeking to curb the market for such animals. With thousands of dogs, cats and rabbits euthanized in the City’s animal shelters annually, Koretz argued that the best way for Los Angeles to protect such animals is to break the link between the mills and pet shops. On June 7th, 2011, the Council agreed, voting unanimously for a law to be drafted banning the commercial breeding of dogs, cats, rabbits and chickens in Los Angeles and the sale of mill animals in pet stores and other outlets.
Koretz’s motion requests that the Los Angeles Department of Animal Services (LAAS), with the assistance of the Chief Legislative Analyst, the City Attorney and the Los Angeles Police Department, study and make recommendations to the Board of Animal Services Commissioners and the City Council on the following proposals:
- The establishment of a ban on the sale of commercial animal mill-bred dogs, cats, chickens and rabbits within the city limits.
- The creation of a program whereby LAAS can work with licensed pet stores to make shelter animals available for adoption at those stores on a regular or periodic basis.
- The creation of a program whereby LAAS, as a part of its normal pet store licensing procedures, publicly and visibly identifies stores that excel in meeting rigorous humane requirements and conditions in the kenneling and sale of animals consistent with all City, state and federal laws, or which do not sell live animals.
- The prohibition of the establishment and/or operation of puppy, kitten, chicken and rabbit mills within the City of Los Angeles.
The motion also included language instructing LAAS to propose ordinances and institute programs that accomplish these enumerated proposals to the fullest extent possible. Consideration is even being given to allowing the stores some financial incentive to help. Koretz has said that he would like the city become part of the solution to pet overpopulation and that going after the source of some of the unwanted and homeless animals will help. "We don’t want to be part of the problem. We want to be part of the solution. We want to make it more difficult to sell puppy mill animals and easier to adopt our wonderful animals out of the shelters," said Koretz to local TV station, KABC.
There are more and more cities ready to make the commitment to help our homeless and abandoned animals and to stop the perpetuation of mill pets. This solution tackles the problem head-on. Currently, there are only six cities in the United States that have banned the sale of puppies in pet stores. They are: West Hollywood, California; South Lake Tahoe, Nevada; Albuquerque, New Mexico; Austin, Texas; and Hermosa Beach, California; and, as of February 2011, Lake Worth, Florida. They are proof that it can be done! In addition to LA, other big jurisdictions are also considering similar bans, including Irvine, California; San Francisco, and Suffolk County, New York. And ALDF will be there to help.