Posted: October 7, 2010, 2:30 p.m. EDT
The 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.
Industry Professional Site: Comments from non-industry professionals will be removed.