by Jennifer Mishler
Categories: Animals, Causes.
Photo: Flickr/Creative Commons

The movement to put an end to puppy mill breeders is growing, and it seems that Canada is making some good steps. We recently wrote about a nationwide chain of pet stores that stopped selling dogs and cats and began to help find homes for  adoptable dogs and cats. Now, Toronto has joined in the puppy mill fight.

Yesterday, the Toronto city council voted unanimously to ban the sale of dogs and cats in pet stores. Most of the adorable puppies and kittens you find in stores are from large-scale breeding operations, and these breeders continue to breed more and more animals while shelters and rescue groups continue to be overcrowded with dogs and cats in need of homes. According to CTV News, Councillor Glenn De Baeremaker’s proposed ban went before the council in May but it was postponed. He says that the new ban “slams the door closed on people who mass produce animals for profit” and will allow those who adopt pets to know they were “treated humanely and with love.”

Pet stores will be able to feature pets available for adoption through local rescue organizations, Toronto’s Animal Control Services or the Toronto Humane Society, according to Inside Toronto. Licensed breeders will continue to be able to sell at their own facilities, but not at pet stores. Baeremaker says, “The goal of this motion is to stop animal cruelty…We know we will never shut down puppy mills. But hopefully through this we can stop these fly-by-night operations.”

Richmond, B.C. also banned the pet store sales of dogs and cats last year, becoming the first Canadian city to do so.


About Jennifer Mishler

Jennifer Mishler is a writer, and a vegan and animal activist. When she's not writing, you can often find her volunteering or advocating for animal, environmental and human rights causes. Along with writing for Ecorazzi, she has contributed writing for nonprofits like Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, and enjoys blogging. She resides in the Washington, DC area (and loves all the vegan food it has to offer). Follow Jennifer on Twitter: @jennygonevegan.

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  • Lee

    Awesome work, Toronto! You’ve done the so-called civilised world proud. If you can do it, so can the rest of the world.

  • Bev McMullan-Kungl

    This is absolutely great news!!!! This is a huge step in protecting animals from monster breeders who are in it only for the money and not for the fact that they love animals. Now, hopefully, the rest of the world will follow!!! Now I would like to see the province of Ontario to lift the ban against pit bulls!!! One small step at a time!!!!

  • boo radley

    Good work…should be more of it.


    STOP !!!!!

  • Carole692

    Great example for the rest of the world >
    Don’t buy while shelters pets die!!!!!!!

  • http://www.weganizm.com Lilly

    I still don’t get why everything is so upside down. Why they are stopping the stores from selling animals instead of banning breeding and have a compulsory spaying law? Mostly the dogs and cats in shelters come from the “home” breeding and are very seldom purebred. I guess nobody wants to address the real problem. If people were to pay for not having their animal spayed, then we wouldn’t have shelters and mass killing of innocent dogs and cats.

  • Luke

    Why should people be forced to buy damaged adult dogs no one wanted from shelters? It’s analogous to saying that while there are any unadopted crack babies/violent 13-year-old juvenile delinquents, that no one should be able to have (sire/bear) children of their own. My life is not the property of the government to do with as it pleases.

    And, about the local gov’t only letting neutered/spayed dogs be sold: if I want to own an unneutered (uncastrated) male dog, that’s my business. If they want to offer free dog vasectomies, I might take them up on that. But, I’ve had one male dog neutered earlier in my life, and never will do that to one again; he might as well have been killed, as what that did to him.

    It’s the shelter dogs that are in oversupply (and need to be reduced in numbers) relative to demand, not the healthy purebred young puppies. I don’t see why this is so hard to understand.