Banning Sales of Pet Store Animals

The City Bar supports amendments to New York’s Agriculture and Markets Law and General Business Law that would ban pet shop sales of puppies, kittens and rabbits (A.4283 (AM L. Rosenthal) / S.1130 (Sen. Gianaris)). If enacted, New York would join over 300 cities, local governments and states across the country that have enacted pet store animal sales bans. Specifically, the proposal aims to curb sales of animals produced in large-scale commercial breeding facilities — commonly known as “puppy mills” and kitten and rabbit factories — that mass-produce animals with little regard for animal welfare. Animal mills and factories have generally been regulated in two ways: by regulating the mills and factories themselves, an approach which the federal government has taken; and by attempting to regulate the distributors, particularly pet stores. Neither has been effective in reducing or eliminating the problems at many commercial breeding facilities, which include overcrowding and unsanitary conditions, lack of adequate food, water, socialization, and veterinary care, and inadequate protection from the cold or heat. Live animal sales comprise only a small fraction of the money spent in the pet industry. Pet stores across the country are updating their business models, no longer selling animals from commercial breeding facilities and instead offering pets for adoption and focusing sales on pet-related products and services, like grooming and boarding. We believe New York’s industry should do the same.


Signed by the Governor, Chp. 681, Approval Memo 40 – December 15, 2022