California

Starting Jan. 1, California pet stores can only sell pets from shelters or rescues

Front Street Shelter gets new ‘smart’ license tags

The City of Sacramento has new pet licenses that come with an array of features to make it easier to find lost or runaway pets. The tags include a QR code for the smartphone savvy and two 24 hour phone line numbers to find a pet's owner.
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The City of Sacramento has new pet licenses that come with an array of features to make it easier to find lost or runaway pets. The tags include a QR code for the smartphone savvy and two 24 hour phone line numbers to find a pet's owner.

Under a new law taking effect Tuesday, pet shops can no longer sell dogs, cats or rabbits unless they’d been obtained from a public shelter or rescue group.

In other words, California has banned its pet stores from selling pets produced by private breeders.

Adding to and amending the state health and safety code as well as the food and agricultural code, the Pet Rescue and Adoption Act bars pet store operators from selling dogs, cats or rabbits “unless the dog, cat, or rabbit was obtained from a public animal control agency or shelter, society for the prevention of cruelty to animals shelter, humane society shelter, or rescue group.”

The law also calls for store owners to maintain sufficient documentation of dogs’, cats’ and rabbits’ backgrounds and to display the information clearly on the animals’ enclosures.

Violation of the new law is a misdemeanor, carrying a civil penalty of $500 per pet sold illegally.

Assembly Bill 485 was signed in October by Gov. Jerry Brown.

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