Cat shelters become unregulated ‘commercial suppliers’ to pet shops in California

The new Californian law which makes it obligatory for pet shops to obtain supplies of animals from shelters and rescues (as opposed to puppy and kitten mills) has had an unforeseen consequence, namely that shelters which are unregulated have been thrust into the supply chain to provide regulated pet shops with pets.

The sadness of cat rescue
Cat rescue. Photo in public domain.
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

Animal shelters which are tax exempt charities are now directly attached to commercial enterprises. And there is no definition for the term ‘animal rescue’ nor standards imposed on these organisations, so reports Phyllis M Daugherty of She makes a very interesting and important point.

Pet Rescue and Adoption Act – Assembly Bill 485

We know that there is a wide spectrum of animal rescue organisations from near cat hoarding in poor conditions to professional set ups.

“Rescues in California have no state regulation.”

They only have to be registered as a charity, be a non-profit and file a 501(c)3 tax form. So, in effect, California lawmakers have given to anyone who files the correct form the right to provide animals to pet stores while the stores themselves are scrutinised and regulated.

Phyllis makes the point that under this new regime the lawmakers of California should consider regulating animal rescues so that they oversee rescues in the same way they have rules governing other product suppliers in the interests of consumer protection and animal welfare.

As mentioned this is a good point because the door is ajar for unscrupulous people involved in cat and dog rescue to benefit financially from supplying pet stores which can undermine the ethics that should accompany animal rescue otherwise the end result will be little better than the situation that the lawmakers wanted to eradicated.

You might end up with “unscrupulous puppy-mill pet dealers rebranding themselves as ‘rescues'”.

Apparently more than 35 states have some sort of regulation over animal rescue organisations. The argument is that the same should apply to California.

Source: City Watch.

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Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

3 thoughts on “Cat shelters become unregulated ‘commercial suppliers’ to pet shops in California”

  1. Also in today’s social media world how long do you think a pet store would stay in business if they sold sick animals? Also PETA has been able to shut down pet stores who are abusive and sell sick animals by organizing a protest and putting it all over social media, most recently in NYC, the owners just closed up and left one day. People in my town here in CA forced a pet store to also close up and go away by protesting in front of the store every day, all very legal. The owner decided it was easier to leave than pay legal and court fees. People in CA are very passionate about animals and will take to the streets to defend them from greedy bastard criminal abusing breeders. Other states unfortunately not so much but the tide is changing with declawing bans in CO, NY, NJ, CA.

  2. It is very easy to check the status of a legitimate rescue. Any 501 3 c non profit organization IS registered and IS regulated heavily because of their tax exempt status. It is also possible to check their financials. Will this stop every evil POS who abuses animals and should be beaten within an inch of their lives? No, most laws a criminal finds ways around it because they are criminals. But this law will definitely put a lot of these houses of horror out of business. Sounds like the mill sadists and shithead POS breeders tried to use this propaganda to not get the law passed. And they gave each other a way to get around the law in case their other POS mill sadists did not figure it out. Stop saying this, YOU ARE HURTING ANIMALS AND HELPING THESE SCUMBAGS. THE LAW IS PASSED, SHUT UP

  3. Yeah this is messed up. I actually thought the shelters were regulated, but they’re not. Not yet anyway, and the way things have been going I doubt they will be any time soon. Messed up. The ASV (Association of Shelter Veterinarians) states: “To date, no federal agency or judicial act regulates the welfare and care of companion animals in a shelter environment.” However they, the HSUS, and the ASPCA offer guidelines. There are laws governing, but the remaining problem is enforcement.

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