California Governor Jerry Brown has signed Assembly Bill (AB) 485, legislation which will improve conditions for puppies, kittens and rabbits sold in pet shops inside the state.
Beginning in January 2019, pet retailers must refrain from buying those animals from breeders. Animals sold in pet stores must come from shelters or rescue agencies only. It will still be legal for individuals to adopt from breeders, though.
Jacey Fortin’s article on the New York Times site explores the pros and cons of this new law, and I hope people will read it carefully. A link to the article is below. The New York Times site allows nonsubscribers to read up to ten free articles per month.
Personally, I favor this law, even after reading about the disadvantages. It is likely to result in fewer animals being bred under inhumane conditions, and people who insist on having a purebred Teacup Poodle puppy will still be free to adopt directly from a breeder.
Ben Ashel, a retailer in Augora Hills, is quoted in the article as saying people who want specific breeds will be motivated to buy online. That’s already happening, and I hope taking storefront businesses out of the supply line will result in fewer animals being bred by people who take online orders. However, Mr. Ashel is suggesting the problem will get worse, not better, and he could be right.
Nationwide action is needed to stop so-called puppy mills from exploiting animals. Regardless of how many jobs are involved, no animal should be conceived strictly for profit. A sincere breeder should love his/her animals and want the best homes for them, just the way a person acquiring a pet in a business transaction should look closely at the conditions for breeding that animal.
It’s all about respect.