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Ban on Pet Sales Not the Solution

The City Council’s Animal Welfare Committee on Tuesday passed a ban on the sale of commercially bred dogs, cats, rabbits and other animals from pet stores in the City of Los Angeles.

The move to try to get the public to instead adopt their pets from one of the city’s overwhelmed animal shelters may sound like a good idea, but it’s one we do not think will work.

There are two types of pet owners: those who rescue their pets from shelters, and those who love a certain breed of dog or cat. Unless the animal shelters suddenly fill up with the pure bred variety, those who prefer to own an animal of this type will just go out of Los Angeles to get one.

We believe that puppy mills should be driven out of business and we think that finding a way to have pet owners guarantee their pets didn’t come from puppy mills is a better way to go. Increased regulation, oversight and heavier fines for those who abuse or ignore regulations prohibiting puppy mill type animals from being sold at pet stores is a better solution.

As for getting people to take pets from a shelter, perhaps rewarding these folks with something to publicly demonstrate their caring is also a good idea.

We don’t know how you get people to stop allowing their pets to breed, but banning the sale of pure breeds at pet stores is not the solution.

Sadly, there will always be careless and misguided people who will fail to take responsibility for their pets. Hopefully, now that the economy is getting a little better, the number of people who for economic reasons had no choice but to give up their pets will go down. And those who can afford to take care of a pet will choose to get one from an animal shelter.