Hermosa Beach considers banning puppy and kitten sales in pet stores; measure passes initial vote
Councilman Jeff Duclos proposed the legislation, which is intended to help put puppy mills and kitten factories out of business and is modeled on a similar ban approved in West Hollywood last month. A preliminary vote Tuesday received the unanimous support of the Hermosa Beach City Council, the Daily Breeze reports. A final vote is scheduled for April 13.
"We commend the humane leaders of Hermosa Beach for recognizing the direct link between inhumane puppy mills and local pet store sales of dogs and cats," Jennifer Fearing, the senior director of California programs for the Humane Society of the United States, said of the proposal. "Rather than supporting inhumane puppy mills by purchasing an animal from a pet shop or over the Internet, we encourage people to adopt pets from a shelter or rescue group, or to seek out a reputable breeder and visit their home to ensure any pets they purchase were reared with kindness."
Like West Hollywood's ordinance, Hermosa Beach's won't bar businesses from offering rescued animals for adoption. And like West Hollywood's ban, Hermosa's wouldn't immediately affect any businesses, since no pet stores within city limits currently offer puppies or kittens for sale.
Rather than addressing a problem in Hermosa, City Manager Steve Burrell told the Daily Breeze, the proposal "is thought to provide the beginning of the emphasis on cutting down on the number of puppy mills and cat factories in various places." Pet stores are a common means by which puppy mills distribute their puppies -- and unsuspecting buyers all too often wind up with pets riddled with health problems and other hazards of the puppy-mill trade.
South Lake Tahoe adopted a similar ban on pet-store sales of puppies and kittens last year.
-- Lindsay Barnett
Photo: Dalmatian puppies romp at a New Jersey pet store in 1996. Credit: Mike Derer / Associated Press