New bill places restrictions on pet sales
A new law unanimously passed in Montgomery County places restrictions on the sale of pets.
Patty Quinby says, “The bill does not allow the sale of any animals that do not come from a registered rescue group, or a 501-C3 organization, or an animal control organization.”
Quinby is the executive director of the Talbot County Humane Society; and she also happens to serve as the president of the Professional Animal Workers of Maryland. She’s well versed on the bill recently passed in Montgomery County.
She says she would love to see something like it on the shore and maybe even state wide. The bill prohibits retailers like pet stores from selling puppies and kittens unless they come from shelters or rescue groups. The idea is to crack down on the sale of puppy mill animals.
Quinby goes on, “They are keeping animals in very small inhumane confinement and all they do is breed them.”
The term puppy mill isn’t just limited to canines; it’s the mass breeding of any animal.
Quinby replies, “When you do that you’re getting animals that are not healthy. They have congenital birth defects and other medical issues, they often behavioral issues because they are being inbred.”
Quinby believes some people that would oppose this type of bill tend to be associated with dishonest breeders. She stresses that this won’t put pet stores out of business. Instead, she explains how it could build a partnership.
Quinby continues, “Between the pet stores, and the local rescue groups, and the humane societies. It is fabulous. It gives these animals a venue to find a home outside of a shelter.”
Quinby tells us there haven’t been any motions to introduce a bill like this in Talbot County, but she believes that may be because at the moment they don’t have any pet stores that sell animals.
However, she says there are other counties on the shore that do. She believes this bill may encourage them to push for local legislation.
The new law in Montgomery County may address the sale of pets in stores, but it doesn’t deal with internet sales.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is currently considering a regulatory change that would bring many more Internet breeders under federal oversight. The fact is, you can never be sure where a puppy comes from unless you see for yourself.
All leading animal welfare groups urge people to never buy a dog online.