Richmond, BC was the first Canadian city to do it in April, 2011. Now Toronto has joined the ranks of cities that have banned the sale of cats and dogs in pet stores.
Puppies and kittens sold in Toronto pet stores must come from shelters, humane societies or rescue groups, city council decided on Wednesday.
Council voted unanimously to institute the changes that aim to keep stores from selling animals from puppy or kitten mills.
The motion, put forward by Coun. Glenn De Baeremaker, originally went to council at the end of May but was postponed.
De Baeremaker told CTV Toronto on May 31 that the approval of this motion would mean pet owners would know exactly where their pet is coming from, “and that it’s been treated humanely and with love.”
De Baermaeker said on Wednesday that he was pleased with the vote.
“It really slams the door closed on people who mass produce animals for profit,” De Baeremaeker told The Globe and Mail.
The motion is designed to combat the illegal sale of dogs and cats from some breeders who raise the animals in unsanitary and overcrowded enclosures.
Council also directed city officials to work with the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to animals and encourages residents to report any knowledge of operating puppy or kitten mills in the city.
In August, a national pet store chain, PJ’s Pets, announced that the store will no longer sell puppies and instead focus on supporting pet adoption services.
Of note is the recent decision by PJ’s pet stores – one of Ontario’s primary animal “retailers” – to stop selling dogs and cats, and to work with shelters, instead. Petland, in Calgary, made a similar proclamation on September 12, 2011.
A very encouraging trend is afoot. Is Ottawa next? The Ottawa Humane Society is urging City Council to consider a similar motion.
Many voices are speaking out to keep the ball rolling by banning the sale or trade of animals on Kijiji. Of note, also, are the mills that farm smaller animals, such as rabbits and rodents.
Further reading and articles:
From an Ethical Business Perspective
Smaller Animal Mills