New Jersey –-(Ammoland.com)- NAIA Trust is here to make you aware and keep your rights protected, but we need your help. Please take action today and send a message to New Jersey Senators and ask them to oppose New Jersey Senate Bill 63.
This bill is disastrous for consumers, breeders, and pet shops alike. The bill has been revised from a prior more onerous version, but is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. While it appears on its face to have removed requirements affecting hobby breeders, it has added a new category of “pet dealers” that still passively restricts breeders on how to they transfer animals. Any breeder who sells more than 5 dogs or cats in non-face to face situations would be considered a pet dealer, subject to many of the same requirements and regulations as pet shops. Breeders often have established relationships with purchasers and fellow breeders that do not require face to face transactions to “legitimize” the transaction.
It could also open the door to further unknown restrictions in the future as the Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety is empowered with the ability to impose new rules and regulations for pet dealers as needed.
Any kind of transfer or exchange of dogs or cats conducted in parks (show grounds), parking lots, commercial or retail locations, flea markets, etc., are strictly prohibited. Shelters and rescues are exempt from this requirement, and may set up shop in front of pet stores, rest areas, etc., then disappear when the sale is over.
The bill would greatly decrease the availability and choice of purebred dogs or pedigreed cats for New Jersey residents in the future looking for a pet. Pet shops licensed after January 12, 2016 would be required to obtain dogs and cats from the unregulated source of rescue and shelters, where dogs and cats are transported and relocated without any oversight, licensure, or inspections. A recent study has shown that the likelihood of finding a purebred dog in a shelter is extremely low. There have been countless cases of relocated rescue dogs from unknown sources with extremely contagious diseases, some even transmittable to humans, such as canine influenza, brucellosis, and even RABIES.
This bill gives unbalanced future preference to unregulated rescue channels as a source for pet shops over commercial breeders that are inspected, licensed, and have a platform for consumer protection through complaints. None of these levels of consumer protection extend to pets purchased from shelters or rescues.
Rescue relocation exists because the number of dogs and cats in shelters in many parts of the country are so low that importation is vital to keeping shelters afloat. Should this bill become law it will undoubtedly greatly increase the number of rescue dogs and cats from unknown sources out of state and even outside of the country being channeled into the state of New Jersey, at great risk to public health.
Consumers should have the right to choose their pet, whether it be from a responsible breeder, a pet store that selects dogs and cats from inspected and licensed breeders, or from a shelter or rescue. It is not the legislature’s place to make that choice for them. Removing pet shops as a viable source for purpose bred pets will send more consumers looking for particular breeds to underground sources. Forcing pet shops to source dogs and cats only from rescue sources not only wrongfully limits consumer choices, but will also regulate otherwise legal pet shops out of business, which is simply un-American.
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