The city of Vancouver is taking one step closer to banning the retail sales of dogs, cats and rabbits. On Thursday June 29th, council voted unanimously in favour of a motion to change the bylaw that allows for the sale of small pets from commercial breeding facilities.
Councillor Heather Deal has been calling for the city to prohibit the for-profit sale of pets following the recent opening of a pet store in Vancouver’s Marpole neighbourhood. The new store, Granville Pet and Garden, opened in Vancouver last month. The owner, Earnest Ang, has faced multiple complaints in the past. He owned a franchise of Pet Paradise in 2010. The store eventually closed in 2011 as a result of the Richmond pet sale ban.
In 2015, Ang’s Pet Habitat in Burnaby closed after numerous complaints to the SPCA, City of Burnaby and Metrotown Mall. Granville Pet and Garden claims that they get their pets from reputable breeders and puppy brokers.
“The biggest issue is where they’ve come from. There’s no chain of supply to guarantee that they weren’t treated poorly in their early lives and that they aren’t being bred in an unethical way.”Councillor Heather Deal
Deal is encouraging people to adopt pets rather than buy them from retail stores. Residents would still be able to adopt through a recognized shelter or buy a cat, dog or rabbit from a licensed breeder.
This move by council is welcomed by The BC SPCA.
“Council is standing up against the importation of puppies from mills and issues related to impulse purchases. With so many cats and rabbits being abandoned and surrendered to shelters and rescues, this is the right move.”Amy Morris, BC SPCA Manager of Public Policy and Outreach
The BC SPCA says it would like to see all municipalities follow Vancouver, Richmond and New Westminster in banning the sale of cats, dogs and rabbits from pet stores. Both Richmond and New Westminster have successfully implemented bylaws banning the for-profit sale of pets.
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According to Paws for Hope executive director Kathy Powelson, the Canadian Kennel Club code of practice for breeders prohibits the sale of dogs to pet stores.
“We’re asking the city to ban the retail sale of cats, dogs and rabbits. No reputable breeder will sell to pet stores. It is not uncommon that if you purchase a pet from a pet store, that pet is going to have health and behaviour issues.”Kathy Powelson
Do you think Edmonton should follow Vancouver by implementing such bylaws?
This article was written by Zafrina Burton.