Posted on August 6, 2015: While it is ironical that in a developing country such as India, it is illegal to kill a stray dog, in the developed world there are state-owned and operated pounds and shelters where cats and dogs are routinely euthanised. Maybe that is what gave a district court in Phoenix, Arizona in the US the necessary impetus to pass a judgement, last week, directing all pet stores in the state to stop selling puppies and kittens, but instead offer rescue and shelter animals up for adoption.
The city of Phoenix passed an ordinance in 2013 with the objective of taking down puppy mills. Gingertail has reported before on how puppy mills are cruel and unscrupulous dog breeding operations that are only looking to profit from the demand for pedigree dogs. This is a huge problem in India and the dog breeding and sale market is entirely unregulated in the country.
In the United States, there has been a growing movement of animal lovers and legislators looking to shut puppy mills down. In March 2015, Montgomery County in Maryland passed a unanimous bill that banned pet stores from selling cats and dogs that come from puppy mills or breeders. Pet stores in the area can only sell pets that come from rescue centres or shelters.
New Jersey recently passed a bill that placed a stipulation on pet stores to disclose where their dogs and cats were coming from. This is to ensure that no illegal or sub-standard puppy mill was allowed to sell puppies and kittens through pet stores in New Jersey. So far, 59 cities and counties in the United States have outlawed selling puppies and kittens in pet stores that come from large-scale breeding centres.
It would be great to see some legislation of any kind directed at the puppy breeders and pet shops in India. Like I said before, this is an entirely unregulated space where the animals are suffering for profit.
Contesting the ruling
But not everyone is on board with the US district court ruling in Arizona. Small business owners who operate pet stores are disgruntled about this government interference in their functioning. Owners of Puppies N Love pet stores, Frank and Viki Mineo, are contemplating appealing the court decision as they claim that they only source their puppies and kittens from USDA certified breeders.
While innocent dogs and cats, in some cases abandoned pets, are being regularly killed in shelters and pounds all across the United States, operating pet stores selling puppies and kittens who come from breeders seems to be a questionable venture. It also reflects poorly on the people who are looking to ‘buy’ pets from these stores while ignoring the burgeoning population of doomed cats and dogs in the shelters.
Will such a ruling ever be a reality in India?
Watch this beautiful video of what could be…