City hall is mulling a bylaw prohibiting the retail sale of dogs and cats at pet stores, an initiative spearheaded by local group Actions Speak Louder Calgary (ASLC).
While most retail chains in Calgary have voluntarily stopped this practice already, group co-founder Jennifer Kaiser said the bylaw is needed to ensure compliance and prevent stores from reverting back to prior practices.
“We would like to cut off the option for them of going back (to retail sales),” she explained.
The ASLC mailed more than 400 letters to city aldermen and Mayor’s Office after this year’s pet expo about their bylaw petition.
A reply from Mayor Nenshi’s office confirmed administration will put forth recommendations to committee in the fall, including a ban on retail pet sales, “to ensure that it does not become a standard practice again in the future.”
Head of bylaw, Bill Bruce, said this about making a statement.
“You’re talking about a life here — you need to have more consideration to that than you would to buying a pair of shoes,” he explained. “The retail sale of cats and dogs is probably not in the best interest of the animal, because it’s an emotional buy.”
He added another issue is that most of these animals sold at retail outlets often come from high volume breeders, making it about ethical procurement as well.
Some stores have partnered with animal adoption agencies, a partnership both the city and ASLC applaud and would like to see continue.
“It’s an adoption process, not a sale,” Bruce said.