skip to main content









Donation Heart Ribbon

City Council Makes Tentative Vote To Ban Retail Pet Shops

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The San Diego City Council tentatively voted today to ban the retail sale of dogs, cats and rabbits in pet stores and other commercial establishments in the city.

The amendment to the municipal code makes it "unlawful for any person to display, offer for sale, deliver, barter, auction, give away, transfer or sell any live dog, cat or rabbit in any pet shop, retail business or other commercial establishment located in the city of San Diego, unless the dog, cat or rabbit was obtained from a city or county animal shelter or animal control agency, a humane society or a nonprofit rescue organization.''

Councilwoman Lorie Zapf, who introduced the amendment, said the condition of pets bred in so-called "puppy mills'' is a "passionate'' issue.

"I really love animals,'' Zapf said. "I just want to ensure that they're treated well, and humanely.''

Under the amendment -- which was unanimously approved today but requires a second reading to take effect -- pet stores will need to keep certificates that identify the sources of their animals and make them available to animal control officers, law enforcement, code compliance officials or other city employees.

The owner of the one establishment that will be most affected, David Salinas of San Diego Puppy, told the council members that he cares about animals.

"Anybody that will tell you that I don't care about puppies, or where they come from, and it's strictly about money, is completely false,'' Salinas said.

The breeder he uses does things the right way, but has been under "constant'' attack by "the animal rights extremist movement,'' Salinas said.

He said his store has remained in business because he sells quality animals, and has many repeat customers.

Before the meeting, Salinas told reporters that he would go to court or state legislators for relief if the city ordinance was adopted.

Supporters of the ban, however, said it's less about his store and more about preventing an influx of animals from unregulated puppy mills that are outside California.

Private breeders and nonprofit organizations that adopt animals to the public would be unaffected. Chain stores like Petco and Petsmart offer pets through partnerships with animal rescue groups, a practice that would remain legal.

A dozen California cities, including Chula Vista, have banned the retail sales of animals, according to a city staff report.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.


Avatar for user 'Alex_Grebenshchikov'

Alex_Grebenshchikov | July 9, 2013 at 3:25 p.m. ― 3 years, 8 months ago

I think this is great, since I am not a big fan of animals. Dogs are OK I guess, as long as they don't lick me, touch me with their wet noses, jump on me or bark at me, or go to the bathroom in my house. I am allergic to cats, and rabbits breed way too fast. So, yea, lets ban pet shops and reduce the animal problem a little.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'muckapoo1'

muckapoo1 | July 9, 2013 at 4:47 p.m. ― 3 years, 8 months ago

So, Council will have the ongoing right to limit any business they see as questionable. They allow Gentleman's clubs but will ban the sale of pets. This is clearly the effects of large groups like SPCA. They are giving up their fight against puppy mills and throwing legitimate breeders under the bus. I have stopped any further donations to the SPCA and the Humane Society for their tactics against free enterprise. Shame on both of them for pushing the issue to this point. I hope Council has better sense.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'theRose'

theRose | July 9, 2013 at 5:12 p.m. ― 3 years, 8 months ago

Free enterprise is alive and well in the sale of products and services for pets. As long as healthy animals are left unwanted, abandoned at shelters or on the street, lonely, cold, scared, and often euthanized well before their time, "legitimate" breeders will gladly work in conjunction with rescue groups to ensure that no over-breeding occurs.

You criticize the SPCA and Humane Society, but these are the organizations that end up caring for animals who've been abandoned by impulse buyers who no longer find those pets so cute when they grow bigger, needing lots of attention and costly food or medicine.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'muckapoo1'

muckapoo1 | July 9, 2013 at 7:15 p.m. ― 3 years, 8 months ago

Ah, I see. Abandoned animals is the like the "for the children" mantra the left uses for all of it's agenda. Hollar that out and any freedom can be compromised for the future. Free enterprise is dead if this type of governing is allowed.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | July 9, 2013 at 8:57 p.m. ― 3 years, 8 months ago

The puppy mill problem is out of control.

I am happy to see this decision.

muck, I'm all for a good left vs right argument, but this isn't the issue or that.

I know conservatives who agree with this.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'CaliforniaDefender'

CaliforniaDefender | July 10, 2013 at 12:38 p.m. ― 3 years, 8 months ago

Congratulations to Councilwoman Lorie Zapf and the City Council for showing bravery and resolve against the puppy mills and the terrible stores that sell abused animals.

To David Salinas of San Diego Puppy, the elected leaders and citizens of San Diego CLEARLY do not approve of the cruelty that your dishonorable industry engages in.

( | suggest removal )

Avatar for user 'muckapoo1'

muckapoo1 | July 10, 2013 at 6:04 p.m. ― 3 years, 8 months ago

I can only hope this unfair law ends up in court.

( | suggest removal )