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« Miami (not surprisingly) missed the point | Main | Management of information »

July 16, 2010


PAMM - People Against MisInformed Morons

Hey, its even more convenient to just order a pet off the internet so I'll just do that. And internet sales are even harder to regulate (pet stores are easy since they are under the publics eye) so it will be easier to skirt regulation.

And its always refreshing to see AW folks waste there time getting useless or even harmful regulation passed instead of actually doing the right things to save lives.

PAMM - People Against MisInformed Morons

Also, the idea that shutting down one or two pet stores in a city the size of Austin will make any real impact is ridiculous.

Business owners should stand up for this pet store - who knows what business another group of zealots will come after next.

This is like cutting off sudafed to get after the meth problem - ask Mexico how that's working.


This is just another way for bureaucrats to blame someone else instead of taking responsibility and doing what has been proven to save animals.
When San Francisco was no kill, their offsite adoptions were so successful that the pet stores couldn't compete and went out of business. If every shelter functioned the same way this shelter was, we'd get a "2-fer"... shelters would adopt out all healthy and treatable pets and pet stores would stop selling animals... and therefore putting puppymills out of business too. So really a "3-fer".


How refreshing to note the absence, so far, of pro nanny-state commentary in this thread.


Thanks for the link Brent and, of course, another fantastic blog that provides great details and stats!!

Your key points are, in my opinion, what I think most AW/AR folks fail to take into consideration with their arguments and proposed legislation. You simply can't legislate people to change their minds or their hearts, about the type of dog that they want.

And, to make matters worse, limited hours and restrictive adoption practices by some shelters and rescues only reinforce the belief in some pet owners' minds that a shelter is not the best place for finding their new pet. As you mention, shelters can do A LOT to change those beliefs and perceptions.

Thanks for what you do!!


It's surely a fallacy to assume ending the sale of animals in pet shops means the shop will close. Products for pet use (food, kitty litter etc.) are a much greater proportion of total sales and some people will make a deliberate choice to buy these from pet stores that don't also sell animals.

That said, I'd say the situation is very different for dogs/cats and the other animals commonly sold in pet stores. Most people don't think buying puppies or kittens from a pet shop is a good idea but significant numbers do impulse buy all kinds of other animals. Unless US stores are much more clued up than the ones here in the UK customers really don't get much information about the needs of exotics and rabbits (for example that the cute little tortoise will end up heavier than I am if he survives so he will need a really big enclosure).

dog fence pro

I have 7 rescue pets and think everone should at least look at shelters before pet stores.

Social Mange

Good post, the stats on people buying from pet stores were surprising.

There was a recent hoarder bust up here, with a number of small animals (rabbits, rats, hamsters, etc) having to go into the city animal services. Some of these animals were very unwell and had to be euthanized.

Why don't these AR freeks get current legislation enforced, work on getting sufficient funding to have it enforced, rather than shovelling more and more nanny state nonsense onto the books which taxpayers can't and shouldn't carry and which won't be effective?

Mary Haight

I agree - there are really bad examples of shelters out there. It only takes one bad experience with a shelter to turn people off permanently. Much room for improvement in this field. Problem is change never seems to happen fast enough, as with the USDA and their documented lack of oversight of puppy mills.

How can any of us force the USDA to do their jobs, enforce the rules, police their own perhaps corrupt, perhaps lazy, or perhaps simply overworked employees who are too few in number to get the job done right? When no one is minding the store, who do we get to do a mop up job of what's slipping through cracks when cruelty hangs in the balance? I know some AR and AW folks who would love to do that work...

I do hear you on the seeming weirdness of stopping "free enterprise" but then we as a society stopped a lot of enterprise over our history - the sale of humans, the sale of actual cocaine in coke, and are working on stopping the sale of crush videos - there's much people have monetized that over time has been seen as impossible to allow to continue.

I don't see why pet shops can't work with shelters instead of puppy mills. It's true it won't be 24/7 puppies anymore. It's also true those puppies are pups for a few weeks and then they turn into real dogs that are unruly, rambunctious and in need of lots of training that many won't find time for. That's when they end up in shelters.

If many pet stores change to an adoption model by working with shelters, it's a way to change people's minds, over time, about the value of shelter dogs - the "rejects" label can be erased.

If all pet shops did this, it potentially saves 500,000 dogs - that's the number of dogs sold from pet stores on an annual basis in the US according to information at North Shore Animal League.

Thanks for the good discussion!



Thanks for stopping by.

I completely agree that the Pet Store/Adoption arrangements appear to be working tremendously in places where they exist and are a good model for folks to emulate.

I just don't think legislating it is th way to go. If people really want to buy puppies, or they really want a dog of a particular breed that isn't readily available in shelters (and there are many that aren't) or if they are denied adoption or otherwise completely turned off from the adoption process -- then they will continue to find the animals elsewhere.

With the internet, it is infinitely easy to find anything you want. If I type in "Puggles in Kansas City" google pulls up hundres of online listings. It's all a click and a phone call away. As long as it is that easy, and there is demand, the dogs will still be bred -- and many will be bred in crappy puppy mills.

So I don't think passing the legislation will do a bit of good. We HAVE to get the USDA to enforce the cruelty laws. And you do it by calling your state representative. Show them the USDA report, and tell them you think this is important to change.

Then, come election season, find out if they are working with/pressuring the USDA to make the necessary changes (or helping provide the necessary funding). If they're not, meet with their competition, get them on board, and then vote out the politician not doing anything.

The government works for us. Every 2,4,6 years the public holds interviews of who will work for us for the next term. We need to make them work harder for us -- instead of pretending there is nothing we can do to solve the problem -- or, instead of distracting ourselves with "well, we can't enforce this, so let's ban that" type of mentality.


Yes, we do need to demand laws be enforced. My concern is for the immediate welfare of the animals while we are doing that. In that, BF program can help. (Sorry, it's quite late, but I think bans were an outcome of program and not a request from BF?)I don't think we should be waiting for government enforcement of laws while dogs are being abused if there are other tools available. Just sayin'...seems wrong. But I appreciate we may simply disagree on this, and thanks for the opportunity to be heard.

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