State Bill 4079 proposes a ban on the sale of dogs, cats and rabbits at pet stores across the state of New Jersey.
Pet stores will still be allowed to sell other pets like lizards and snakes and pet items as long as they are compliant with state guidelines.
Under the proposed law, it would also be unlawful for individual breeders to sell cats or dogs that are “unfit for purchase.” The bill also prohibits animal rescue organizations or similar facilities—pet shops, shelters or pounds—from obtaining a cat, dog or rabbit from a breeder or broker. A fine of $500 (€457) will be imposed for each sales violation.
Promoting pet adoption
The bill justifies that despite the State’s consumer protection act regarding the welfare of homeless animals, breeders and pet shops continue to acquire unhealthy cats and dogs from kitten and puppy mills.
Instead, lawmakers encourage pet shops to facilitate and achieve more successful adoptions by collaborating with animal rescue organizations, shelters and pounds for no monetary compensation.
Furthermore, it would seek to completely repeal the state’s Pet Purchase Protection Act, which currently allows consumers to gain restitution against the death or serious illness of their purchased animal for 14 days.
The law establishes that operators of kennels, pet stores, shelters or pounds will have to apply for a yearly license to show compliance with state regulations regarding health and sanitation and give the state access to its animal sales records.
At the end of November, the bill was referred to the Senate’s Economic Growth Committee, which will need to analyze the text.
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