Industry Leaders Continue Efforts on Small Animal Care Standards
Following a successful roll out at SuperZoo in July, the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council’s (PIJAC) Small Animal Care Committee has been working on distributing the first voluntary standards for this part of the industry and creating uniform standards for shipping small mammals and reptiles.
PIJAC will be distributing hard copies of the standards, as well as flyers with information about the 1-800 hotline for employees to report animal mistreatment, to dozens of breeders and distributors. We hope to accomplish this by the end of the year and to subsequently expand distribution efforts.
A primary reason for the creation of the standards was to ensure the industry was working from one playbook of best practices. For this reason, the committee—led by FishMart, Inc. and PIJAC board chair Laura “Peach” Reid, and made up of experts in the breeding, distributing, and retail of reptiles, small mammals, and birds—has worked diligently to create uniform minimum shipping size requirements for small mammals and reptiles. The requirements are to guarantee that all animals are shipped at a size where the animal is of sound health and will be capable of thriving on its own. This will help ensure that the animal is healthy when it arrives at its destination.
Other exciting and important upcoming efforts will focus on creating industry-wide standardized bird testing requirements and amphibian shipping requirements.
Courtney Hogan is the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council’s (PIJAC) government affairs specialist. She serves as the staff coordinator for PIJAC’s Small Animal Care Committee, which developed the Small Animal Care Standards.