Puppy for sale in a Florida Petland kennel. HSUS
Our fight to stop the sale of puppy mill puppies in pet stores is one of our biggest, one we are waging against fierce industry opposition across the country. Pet store and puppy mill interests are in full force right now, and we’re fighting them in blitzkrieg in Florida and Texas. The situations may be different, but the basic problem is the same. The puppy mill-to-pet store pipeline is a source of animal cruelty, consumer grief, and bad faith that we can eliminate by ending the sale of puppy mill animals on the market Retail.
The situation in Florida is urgent. There, after a failed attempt to directly ban local orders to end puppy mill sales in pet stores, Petland and its pet store allies took a new approach. They put their weight behind SB 620, the Local Business Protection Act, which states that if a city or county in Florida passes an ordinance affecting more than 15% of a business’s profits, that business can seek damages- interest for loss of income. In other words, if a locality passes an ordinance that prevents a Petland store from selling puppies, the city/county may have to reimburse the store for what it may have earned from selling puppy mill puppies – with taxpayers’ money. Pet store and puppy mill interests hope the bill’s passage will discourage other Florida communities from approving humane pet store ordinances, as 83 Florida locations have done in recent years. years. We are now mobilizing defenders to block this threat.
In Texas, we support pet store ordinances in three cities, including Dallas, the only major city in the state that does not have one. We think it’s time for Dallas to join the 10 other cities in Texas that have taken a tough stance on animals, and we’re doing our best to persuade the city council to approve the ordinance. Our case is strong because it’s clear that the pipeline from the puppy mill to the pet store runs through Dallas. There is only one pet store selling puppies in Dallas, a Petland, and despite claims that the store only sources from licensed breeders, public records show that in 2020 it purchased from least 40 puppies to an unregulated breeder in Missouri, a man arrested and charged with animal cruelty earlier this month. Human investigators and law enforcement found 60 dogs and a few cats on the man’s property, and they were in poor condition, lacking shelter, food and water. There was no electricity at the site and no water source for the animals, many of whom were so sick they died within days of being rescued.
In many of our animal welfare campaigns, we are reaching the point where the opposing interest has seen and had enough, and you would think that in 2022, with five states and over 400 cities, towns and counties in nationwide enacting humane pet store laws in a relatively short period of time, Petland and its allies would take the step we’ve asked them to take all along, toward a forward-looking business model and entirely separate from the misery and suffering caused by puppy mills. We’re not there yet, however, and in Florida in particular, Petland, along with other interests in pet stores and puppy mills, is pouring big money into preserving an increasingly controversial business. of pets. They’ve sent the signal that they won’t give up without a fight, so we’re going to give them one.