Bill No.
50-14
Concerning: Animal Control - Retail Pet
Stores
Revised: 10/1712014
Draft
No.
2
Introduced:
October 28.
2014
Enacted:
March
3
2015
Executive:
Effective:
Sunset Date:
~N~o=n=e,_....,-=-----
Ch.
~Laws
of Mont Co. _ __
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COUNTY COUNCIL
FOR MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MARYLAND
By: Council Vice President Leventhal and Councilmembers Navarro,
Branson, Riemer, Berliner, Eirich, Rice, Katz, Rucker, and Floreen
AN ACT
to:
(I)
(2)
prohibit
certain
retail pet stores
from
selling
certain
animals bred in
certain
breeding
facilities; and
generally amend County animal control law.
By adding
Montgomery County Code
Chapter 5, Animal Control
Article V
Sections 5-405, 5-406, and 5-407
Boldface
Underlining
[Single boldface brackets]
Double underlining
[[Double boldface. bracketsD
Heading or defined
term.
Added to existing law by original bill.
Deletedfrom existing
law by
original bill.
Added by amendment.
Deletedfrom existing
law
or the bill by amendment.
Existing law unqffected by bill.
The County Council for Montgomery County, Maryland approves the following Act:
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BILL NO. 50-14
1
Sec.
1.
Article V (Sections 5-405, 5-406, and 5-407) is added as follows:
Article V. Retail Sale of Dogs and Cats
5-405. Legislative Findings.
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The County Council
finds
and declares that:
(fil
A significant number of puppies and kittens sold at retail pet stores
throughout the United States
£Qill&
from large-scale. commercial
breeding facilities where the health and welfare of the animals are not
adeguately provided for ("puppy mills" and "kitten mills."
respectively). According to The Humane Society of the United States.
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i!
is estimated that 10,000 puppy mills produce more
retail pet stores come from puppy and kitten mills.
ili)
than
2.400,000
puppies a year in the United States and that most dogs and cats sold in
The documented abuses endemic to puppy and kitten mills include
over-breeding. inbreeding, minimal to non-existent veterinary care,
lack of adequate and nutritious food, water or shelter. lack of
socialization, lack of adequate space. and lack of adequate exercise.
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(£}
The inhumane conditions in puppy and kitten mill facilities lead to
health and behavioral issues in the animals bred in those facilities.
However, many consumers are unaware of these issues when
purchasing animals from retail pet stores because of
!!
lack of
education on the issue and misleading tactics of retail pet stores in
some cases. These health and behavioral issues. which may not
present themselves until after the purchase of the animal,
exorbitant :financial and emotional costs on consumers.
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m
impose
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Current Federal, State and County regulations do not properly address
the sale of puppy and kitten mill dogs and cats in Montgomery County
retail pet stores.
-2-
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BILL No. 50-14
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(fil
Restricting the retail sale of puppies and kittens to only those that are
sourced from shelters or rescue organizations is likely to decrease the
demand for puppies and kittens bred
in
puppy and kitten mills, and is
likely to increase demand for animals from animal shelters and rescue
organizations.
33
ill
Due in large part to pet overpopulation.
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state task force recently
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found that 45,000 dogs and cats are euthanized in Maryland animal
shelters annually, at an estimated cost of $8 to
2.
million each year.
Restricting the retail sale of puppies and kittens to only those that are
sourced from
animal
shelters and rescue organizations will likely
reduce pet overpopulation and thus the burden on such agencies and
financial costs on County taxpayers.
{g}
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Across the country, thousands of independent retail pet stores as well
as large chains operate profitably with
~business
model focused on
the sale of pet services and supplies and not on the sale of dogs and
cats. Many of these shops collaborate with local animal shelters and
rescue organizations to offer space and support for showcasing
adoptable homeless pets on their premises.
.(hl
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This law will not
affect~
consumer's ability to
~
obtain~
dog or cat of
his or her choice directly from
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breed-specific rescue organization or
shelter, or from
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hobby breeder where the consumer can see
~
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directly the conditions in which the dogs or cats are bred, or
confer directly with the hobby breeder concerning those conditions.
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ill
The County Council believes it is in the best interests of the County to
adopt reasonable regulations to reduce costs to the County and its
residents, protect the citizens of the County who may purchase cats or
dogs from
~
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retail pet store or other business establishment, help
-3-
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BILL No. 50-14
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prevent
inhumane
breeding
conditions,
promote
community
awareness of
animal
welfare, and foster !! more humane environment
in the County.
5-406. Definitions.
In this Article, the following words have the meanings indicated:
Animal care facility
means an animal shelter maintained
Qy..
or under
contract with. any state, county, or municipality. and whose mission and
practice
~
in whole or significant part, the rescue and placement of animals
in permanent homes.
Cat
means any individual of the species of the domestic cat, felis catus.
Dog
means any individual of the species of the domestic dog, canis lupus
familiaris, or any resultant hybrid.
Non-profit rescue organization
means a non-profit organization that has
tax
exempt status under Section 50l(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. and
whose mission and practice
~
in
whole or in significant part, the rescue and
placement of animals in permanent homes.
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Qfffil:.
tor sale
means to display, sell, deliver, offer for sale or adoption,
advertise for the sale
Qf.
barter, auction. give away. or otherwise dispose of!!
dog or cat.
Retail pet store
means !! store that is required to comply with Title 19,
Subtitle
1
of the Business Regulation Article of the Maryland Code.
5-407. Retail Sale of Dogs and Cats.
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8()
A retail pet store must not offer for sale any dog or cat unless the retail pet
store obtained that dog or cat from:
W
(Q}
an
animal
care facility; or
~
non-profit rescue
organization.
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BILL No. 50-14
82
Approved:
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George Leventhal, President, County Council
Date
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Approved:
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Isiah Leggett, County Executive
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Date
This
is
a co"ect copy ofCouncil action.
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Linda M. Lauer, Clerk of the Council
Date
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