According to AnimalMatters.Org, there are about 6.7 million pets under the care of U.S. animal shelters nationwide each year. Although one of their missions is to protect and nurture the rescued animals, the overwhelming number of pets under their wing is not easy to accommodate. Providing water, food, and health care to abandoned animals is not cheap either.
About 85 million of families in the US own a pet. However, 28% of dog owners purchased their pets from stores. Unbeknownst to most people, once a pet is placed under the care of shelters, it has about 72 hours or 3 days to be adopted before it is euthanized. This leads to about 4,100 pets being put down yearly.
Because there are millions of animals waiting for a place to call their home and an owner to call as their family, a lot of pro-animal groups are encouraging people to adopt pets instead of buying one from pet stores.
2019 has just started, but it is already surprising us with good news. As a solution to this alarming problem, California law makers approved a bill that gave animal activists something to rejoice about this new year. In order to boost the chances of pets from animal shelters to be adopted, California pet stores will only be allowed to sell pets such as dogs, cats, and rabbits only if these pets are from rescue shelters.
Under this pro-animal legislation, pet stores are required to provide valid documents showing the origin of the animals they are selling. Failure to comply to this new law would cause a fine of $500 per animal.
The thoughtful law legally known as Pet Rescue and Adoption Act was introduced by California State Assembly member Patrick O’Donnell. But the law that aims to protect the life of rescued animals was already signed into law by California Governor Jerry Brown way back in year 2017. This law compels pet stores to buy pets from rescue shelters. However, individual civilians are still allowed to purchase pets from private breeders.
California State Assembly member Patrick O’Donnell hopes that the Pet Rescue and Adoption Act will be able to put an end to ‘puppy mills’ and ‘kitten factories.’ Referred to by O’Donnell as the ‘big win for our four-legged friends,’ California has become the first state in US to implement such laws that is beneficiary to animals waiting in rescue shelters.
A part of the text of the Pet Rescue and Adoption Act without the preamble is:
“The people of the State of California do enact as follows:
SECTION 1. It is the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation that would promote the adoption of animals from shelters and rescue groups and encourage humane practices in the purchase of dogs and cats offered for retail sale in California.”
This means that starting the first of January, 2019, pet stores can only sell dogs, cats, and rabbits which they have purchased from government controlled shelter or organization.
In connection to this, the pet stores operating in California are obliged to keep and maintain documents showing the source of each dog, cat, and rabbit that they sell. Each pet should be given a space for at least one year to give them a better chance of being adopted. Government controlled shelters and organizations will also have access to these records.
“It’s a good thing I think to head in that direction.” Jesse Roberts, a pet store owner in California shared his insight regarding implementation of the new law.
California’s Pet Rescue and Adoption Act is America’s one great step in making a firm solution for animal shelter’s overpopulation. Hopefully, their pro-animal’s life law will encourage the rest of the states to follow after their footsteps. After all, this law might be able to convert about 4,100 euthanized pets annually into 4,100 pets with a new place to call their own!
Watch the video below to learn more about one of the good news 2019 has in store for you!
Video | WXYZ-TV Detroit Channel 7
We want to hear your thoughts on this: Should all pet stores be banned from selling non-rescue animals? Yes or No?