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El Paso City Council Amends Pet Sale Ban Proposal

Posted: October 7, 2010, 2:30 p.m. EDT

El Paso City Council Amends Pet Sale Ban ProposalThe El Paso City Council passed an ordinance on Tuesday that will place certain restrictions on the sale of dogs and cats in El Paso, Texas.
The ordinance, introduced in July, originally sought to prohibit the sale of all dogs and cats in an effort to reduce the number of animals euthanized in shelters.

The amended version comes after the original ordinance was tabled in early August when the council was met with opposition from several breeders and rescue groups at a public hearing. The delay was to allow for further discussion on the topic, according to the council.

Mayor John Cook, a proponent of the pet sale ban, formed a Task Force to help develop changes to the ordinance. The Task Force included breeders, veterinarians, animal welfare organizations and animal service professionals, among others.

Under the new ordinance:
• Dogs and cats under eight weeks old cannot be sold.
• No person, retail establishment or animal welfare organization may sell or transfer a dog or cat that is under one year of age for a profit. The animal can only be transferred for a price that is based on certain actual expenses incurred, such as veterinary care, food, shelter, spay/neuter, applicable permit fees and microchip and registration fees.
• However, a retail establishment may from Jan. 1, 2011 through March 31, 2011 sell a dog or cat under the age of one year that is documented to have been in the retail establishment’s possession in El Paso on Dec. 31, 2010 at a price not to exceed the charge or amount advertised/posted for each dog or cat on Dec. 31, 2010.

The idea behind banning the sale of dogs and cats under the age of one is to decrease families from buying puppies and kittens on impulse, according to the council.

Despite what Mayor Cook calls a fair compromise, breeders and animal rights groups alike don’t seem pleased with the new ordinance, according to KTSM News Channel 9. One animal group member said the ordinance could have gone further while a dog breeder questioned how a "large set of complicated amendments” were going to be enforced.

The pet sale ordinance, which also outlines rules on permits, sales records, microchips and others, goes into effect Jan. 1.

To view the ordinance, click here.

Related story: El Paso City Council Delays Proposed Pet Sale Ban

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El Paso City Council Amends Pet Sale Ban Proposal

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Reader Comments
Having worked in shelters and currently in the pet industry I know for a fact that the majority of dogs and cats euthanized don't come from pet stores. Most of the dogs and cats are mixed breeds. Maybe they should outlaw mixed breed animals if they in fact are trying to stop the euthanasia of shelter animals. This ordinance is just another attempt to control the lives of people and their pets and another fine example how the government and people think they know what is best so they force their laws upon others. Too bad that common sense is apparently uncommon in El Paso.
Ted Bell, Amsterdam, NY
Posted: 10/18/2010 1:14:18 PM
Since when does the government have the right to tell its citizen's what they can do with their own property and that they are not allowed to make a profit. The last time this happened was during prohibition and everyone knows what happened then. The bad operations are not the ones this law goes after as these people sit just outside of El Paso and will continue to sell their puppies and the black market will continue to operate. What will happen in El Paso is that only the badly bred dogs in the shelters and rescue groups will be available for adoption and soon the rescue groups will be shipping in dogs from out of the country like the rescue groups in the north east do. And like the north east rescue groups they will be bringing in wild dogs with rabies and other unknown parasites and diseases that will infect our population. This city council is full of idiots who have no clue as to agenda of the animal rights groups. This will not bring down shelter intake as we all know that intake does not come from people who pay a $1000 for their new puppy. It comes from the poor in this city who cannot afford to spay and neuter their dogs and they cannot afford a fence and so they let them roam. This has been documented as the problem for many years, but instead of offering low cost spay and neuter help and education as calgary has done this city chooses to enact a law its citizens do not want and one that will make the problem worse. These people need to be voted out as they are either animal rights radicals or just plain idiots.
Dr. Rosset, Santa Rosa, CA
Posted: 10/12/2010 6:45:58 AM
Given the huge pet overpopulation resulting in hundreds of thousands of dogs euthanized per year as hundreds of thousands of puppies flood the market - - the majority of which are born in puppy mills where thier parents suffer grealty their entire lives -- I applaud the law. If pet stores can no longer sell puppies then puppymillers will lose thier buyers and thankfully go out of business.

If people who want puppies make the educated choice to adopt one, it will reduce the amount of dogs killed in shelters - and hopefully the lack of impulse purchase will reduce the amount fo dogs dropped off at shelters as well.
Posted: 10/8/2010 8:14:07 AM
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