L.A. Pet Stores to Sell Rescued Animals Only

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Oct 27, 2012

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Animal shelters across the country are overrun with cats and dogs. Sadly, many of them are euthanized if they do not make it into homes and animal activists have been searching for a solution for as long as shelters have been around. Now a new controversial Los Angeles ordinance requiring all pet stores to offer only rescued animals for sale may be the answer.

Los Angeles City Council voted this week 12-2 in favor of passing the law that will not only help alleviate pet overpopulation, but also address what are known as “puppy and kitten mills,” where these animals bred for sale are often subjected to substandard conditions. People will still be able to buy directly from breeders if they are not interested in purchasing a rescue animal.

The law comes with a $250 fine for a first offense, and violators could be made to pay up to $1,000 for a third strike, according to ABC News. Reports suggest that some pet store owners are not happy with the decision and maintain that the animals they shelf are well-kept and come from good backgrounds. But animal rights activists across the country are celebrating the initiative.

The Humane Society of the United States estimates that 6-8 million cats and dogs enter shelters in the US each year, and that between 3-4 million are euthanized. It is the hope that the new law will reduce the number of animals without homes in Southern California, and set the precedent for other cities to follow suit. According to the Huffington Post, Chicago plans to enact similar legislation, and it would not be surprising to see others do the same.

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