Selling animals in pet stores may seem harmless; it’s anything but. The sale of pets in stores hurts animals in many ways.

Kitten for sale

Stores that sell pets support animal mill operations and backyard breeders

The owners of these operations – like puppy mills and rabbitries – see animals as products that can turn a profit.

The breeding parents are housed in horrendous conditions living their lives as mini-factories churning out merchandise, never knowing proper care or good health.

Stores that sell pets support animal abuse and neglect.

Animals raised in mills and by backyard breeders have serious health problems

Backyard breeders and mill operators repeatedly breed animals that have genetic deficiencies and health problems. The babies born often have medical problems due to being ill-bred and neglected.

Customers who buy animals in stores are frequently and unknowingly bringing home a very sick pet. When vet bills become overwhelming, the animals become unwanted. Rescues and shelters receive animals that have serious medical problems due to their origin.

Stores that sell pets depend on impulse buysFree bunny or guinea pig with purchase of cage

Purchasing or adopting an animal is a commitment for life. For dogs, cats and rabbits that life is 10 and likely many more years.

The operators of stores who sell pets do not consider the consequences of selling an animal to someone who may not be prepared for that commitment, in fact, they depend on impulse purchases.

The sale of pets in stores increases the number of animals in shelters and rescues

Because stores that sell pets encourage impulse buys, many animals purchased end up on the street or in animal shelters and rescues when they are no longer wanted.

Puppy in pet store cageKingston’s animal welfare organizations are severely overburdened and underfunded. The sale of pets in stores contribute to massive pet overpopulation in our community, which is often controlled through euthanasia.

In our community more than 40% of the cats and nearly 20% of the dogs who end up in a shelter will be euthanized, primarily as a means of population control.

Overpopulation is a frighteningly serious issue in our community. Banning pet store sales will not solve pet overpopulation, but it will have a significant impact.