Update: August 29, 2015:
Lawmakers in Beverly Hills are following Phoenix, Arizona’s lead. It is now illegal for pet stores in Beverly Hills to sell dogs and cats that are not from a shelter or rescue.
Beverly Hills council member Lili Bosse told the Huffington Post:
“I am the biggest animal lover and feel strongly about giving them a voice of safety and love, as they give us.”
While this law won’t make a practical impact on the state of puppy mills in the Beverly Hills area, as there are currently no pet stores that sell dogs or cats in the city, the ordinance is a way for lawmakers to take a public stance against puppy mills and animal trafficking. Hopefully, the move will inspire other cities, where pets are regularly sold in stores, to pass similar laws.
A judge in Phoenix, Arizona recently upheld a 2013 ordinance stating all dogs and cats sold from local pet stores must be rescue animals.
Lawmakers and animal lovers believe that the law will help to put an end to puppy mills. The ASPCA states that most dogs available in pet stores are from puppy mills.
Animals in puppy mills are bred for profit with little regard for the health of the dog. Many of the dogs live out their lives in cages, never knowing what it’s like to get a cuddle, a belly rub, or to step outside in the grass.
Phoenix, and the 59 other cities with similar laws, hope to curb the demand for puppy mills, thus forcing the mills to close down.
This particular Arizona ordinance was challenged in 2014 by the owners of Puppies ‘N Love pet store.
Frank and Vicki Mineo say that they are not advocates of mills. Instead, they obtain their dogs only from reputable breeders. They believe this move by their local officials will force them to close their business.
They are currently considering whether or not to appeal this recent ruling.
Despite the Mineo’s concerns, the majority of dog lovers are overjoyed by this news. Shelters and rescues are overflowing with pups who need loving forever homes. The more cities that mandate that pet stores only sell rescues animals, the fewer pups that will spend years in shelters, waiting for someone to love them.
h/t The Dodo.