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July 9th, 2010
06:00 PM ET

San Francisco considers banning sale of pets, except fish. Good idea?

ALT TEXT

(PHOTO CREDIT: THINKSTOCK)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

San Francisco has had its fair share of crazy ideas... but here's one that's not half bad.

The city is considering banning the sale of all pets, except fish.

That would mean everything... from cats and dogs to hamsters, mice, rats, parrots, guinea pigs, birds, snakes, lizards... and on and on. The city's commission of animal control and welfare calls all these critters "companion animals."

The chairwoman tells the San Francisco chronicle that people buy small animals all the time as an "impulse buy"... they don't think about what they're getting into. and after the people decide they no longer want the animals, they often wind up at a shelter or euthanized.

Hamsters are apparently the biggest problem. People buy them because they think they're cute and cuddly... but quickly change their mind once the rodents start biting them or racing around on their exercise wheels in the middle of the night.

The proposed ban - believed to be the first of its kind - would require San Francisco residents who want a pet to either go to another city, adopt one from a shelter, or find it in the classifieds.

Pet store owners are up in arms - they call it a terrible idea and say they'd have to go out of business. Other critics call it an "anti-pet proposal from people who oppose the keeping of pets."

At a hearing last night, city officials decided to table the measure for now.

Here’s my question to you: San Francisco is considering banning the sale of pets, except fish. Good idea?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Tessa writes:
It's an awesome idea! It would be one step closer to putting an end to animal mills and it would raise the number of pets adopted from shelters. How can you go wrong with that when there are so MANY lives to be saved?

Kea in Honolulu writes:
Jack, Good idea. Owning a pet is like having a child. When the 101 Dalmatians movie remake came out, children across the nation wanted one. People later couldn't handle the responsibilities, and the dogs ended up unwanted in pounds.

Jack in Niceville, Florida writes:
Liberals should love pets. I love my two dogs, but they are obviously Democrats. They have never done an honest day's work in their lives and they survive solely off of my hard work and generosity! By the way, a fish is not a pet, just a decoration you have to feed!

Tim in Texas writes:
It's a good idea. I would make one modification. Allow people to buy pets within the city limits, but only after a waiting period of a week. Far too many people buy pets, as you say, as impulse buys.

Sarah writes:
What a forward-thinking and compassionate idea! Given the number of animals in shelters, this may be the best way to satisfy both a prospective pet owner's desire for companionship and save an animal's life.

Julie writes:
I live in Edson, Alberta, Canada, and I believe this to be the best idea I have ever heard. I hope they make this a worldwide law! Adoption of pets is the best thing to do, because it will reduce impulse purchases as well as put places such as puppy mills out of business. There is way too much animal abuse and neglect in our world. GO SAN FRAN!

Michael in Dallas writes:
What are you, Jack? Some kind of fish bigot?


Filed under: Animals • Pets
soundoff (186 Responses)
  1. Russ in PA

    Let's ban the sale of pets. And the sale of hamburgers. And hot dogs. And stop people from visiting tanning salons. Or drinking a beer. Or walking on the grass. Or spending their own money.

    Personally I'm sick of hearing from such loons that only want to control what others do. If people don't start fleeing San Francisco, one can only assume that there are no true Americans left there... Sell it off to China...

    July 9, 2010 at 1:29 pm |
  2. John from Alabama

    Jack: It is a bad idea, because those animals under animal control will all be killed. No adoption of a dog or cat into a nice home. This is a bad idea. Passing a law that all pets need to be neutered or spade is a good idea. There is something wrong with San Francisco!!

    July 9, 2010 at 1:31 pm |
  3. Rick McDaniel

    Not a very good idea, if you want to acquire any specific pet.

    Of course, if all you want to do, is force people to take shelter animals, like a dictator, then it makes perfect sense.

    Since I like a specific breed of dog, and will not want to change, when and if my existing pets pass on from old age, I guess I should make a mental note NOT to move to SF, because my preferred breed ALWAYS costs way too much money!

    July 9, 2010 at 1:31 pm |
  4. Johnny C (Los Angeles)

    Hi Jack –

    It is a great idea for San Francisco ... I am glad that I do not live there. San Francisco leads the nation in taking away your civil rights.

    The people behind this initiative are the most self-centered, self serving, give a care less attitude to people that do not believe in their cause city in the nation. Obviously, if you live in San Francisco you have limited freedoms. Could you ever imagine living in the midwest and being told "I'm sorry, you shouldn't have a pet of your choosing because we said so!" Only in this city of estranged politicians!

    Jack .. wasn't it these types of strange laws that eventually drove people out of England to create the United States of America? Too much oppressive government? Perhaps the local San Franciso politicians should pick up a history book.

    July 9, 2010 at 1:34 pm |
  5. Richard Oak Harbor, Wa

    Refusing to license mom & pop pet stores within San Francisco city limits is discriminartoryand might lead to business decline in the pet food & accessory warehouse mega chain stores who probably donate substantially to the Mayor's rel-ection campaign fund. Making it a third class misdemeanor for more than one pet per household (except for tropical fish) seems more realistic.

    July 9, 2010 at 1:40 pm |
  6. Mark, Oklahoma City

    Let's see, we've banned the sale of illegal drugs, children, human organs and everything else we can think of.....let's go ahead and put Fido and Fluffy on the list too.

    July 9, 2010 at 1:46 pm |
  7. Billie Shanahan

    If San Francisco prefers to have an abundance of rats, they should stop selling cats.

    Arroyo Grande, CA

    July 9, 2010 at 1:46 pm |
  8. Greg M.

    Jack,
    If the pets are harmful to the environment if they escape,they should not be sold.Here in FL people release boas and iguanas into the wild and they are hurting the ecosystem.I believe the grand canyon has some sort of problem with a species of fish that was released and is devouring everything and not leaving much for the original species.
    Greg M. Largo,FL

    July 9, 2010 at 1:50 pm |
  9. Bert, Oak View, CA

    Government getting involved in things it shouldn't be involved in, is never a good idea!

    July 9, 2010 at 1:51 pm |
  10. Eugene Myers Flat, CA

    Jack, I live 250 miles north of Frisco and sometimes that isn't far enough. The mecca of freaks and geeks has bigger fish to fry than banning the sale of our friends. What will all those gay dudes do when they can't buy a little doggie to carry around? Bow wow wow wow wow Jack.

    July 9, 2010 at 2:20 pm |
  11. Phil

    WHY??!! Pets are bio-degradable, sooo.....whats the problem Frisco

    July 9, 2010 at 2:24 pm |
  12. james s lenon chuckey TN

    While I don't believe in "animal rights," pets can make a huge difference in the life of a person.
    It takes money to turn shelter pets into healthy pets so some fees for transfer of ownership are reasonable.

    On the other hand the selective in-breeding and sale of designer accessory pets should be banned. There are enough humans willing to be dressed in spikes and led around on a leash to satisfy San Francisco's demand.

    July 9, 2010 at 2:26 pm |
  13. RichP, easton, pa

    Show me an example or two of where banning the sale of anything has worked. If anything it just puts a bigger profit in it for those willing to break the law.

    July 9, 2010 at 2:27 pm |
  14. Kevin in Kentucky

    It's a real good idea if you want to put pet shop owners out of business and there employees out of work and add to the unemployment problem already existing.

    July 9, 2010 at 2:37 pm |
  15. pat in michigan

    Yes it is .I have had both kinds of pets and the Mutts were the best. Adopt from the pound only. you will never be sorry.

    July 9, 2010 at 2:41 pm |
  16. Melissa

    Good? No, just weird. I'm not sure why it would be an issue. Though I do think that the sale of pit bulls should be banned.

    July 9, 2010 at 2:51 pm |
  17. Carl

    Jack,
    Did I miss something? Why would they want to do that?

    July 9, 2010 at 2:52 pm |
  18. Ed from MD

    Yes, they're so odd there in San Francisco, we have no idea what they do with the pets anyway.

    July 9, 2010 at 2:58 pm |
  19. Gary H. Boyd

    Having been born and raised in San Francisco I think it's a great idea. Crowded streets and people don't pick up after their animals. Excretement everywhere. Nothing like stepping in a big pile to get the day off to a stinky start. Of course, liberal San Francisco will never allow such a law. It's a fantasy

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    July 9, 2010 at 3:02 pm |
  20. Joe R - Houston

    Governments don't like private property or it's citizens having the right to harmlessly acquire, possess, maintain or dispose of it. This is just the latest example illustrating that fact. The citizens of San Francisco elected power and control freaks and are getting what they deserve.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:03 pm |
  21. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    I have come to the conclusion that most of the idiots in the United States lives in California, they want to legalize pot which is harmful to you and outlaw pets which is proven to help people, especially the elderly live longer.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:08 pm |
  22. Patsy, Texas

    Had to Google this one Jack, and apparently the proposal has been
    tabled. Also, it seems, the people could buy pets in another town
    and bring them back to SF.
    Next question?

    July 9, 2010 at 3:16 pm |
  23. Peg from N.Y.

    Ban the sale of pets?! Except fish?! Bad idea and a bizarre one at that!

    July 9, 2010 at 3:17 pm |
  24. Jack, Niceville, FL

    Huh??? Liberals should love pets. I love my two dogs, but they are obviously democrats. They have never done an honest day's work in their lives and they survive solely off of my hard work and generosity!

    By the way, a fish is not a pet, just a decoration you have to feed!

    July 9, 2010 at 3:17 pm |
  25. frank in Valparaiso Indiana

    Hope they have a no kill shelter.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:21 pm |
  26. Bull

    Jeeze Jack if they do that the illegals will starve..

    July 9, 2010 at 3:21 pm |
  27. Recomar

    Don't we have enough laws on the books already?

    Whatever happened to the free thinking, peace loving individual rights haven of San Francisco?

    I was hoping to put my pet on the city sponsored medical health plan.

    I am not feeling the Love here.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:23 pm |
  28. Mike in Denver

    I read this, and just hear an info-mercial, "yours free, just pay shipping and handling."

    July 9, 2010 at 3:27 pm |
  29. Greg, Hamilton Ontario

    I think it's good to see that there are cities in the US that have nothing more important on thier plate than dog and cat populations. That means they have no real crime, education or infrastructure problems right Jack? Maybe the Mayor of San Francisco should run for Govenor and if that works out run for President. Imagine a president with a proven track record in getting things done right? Sure sounds good eh?

    July 9, 2010 at 3:30 pm |
  30. Al Bledsoe

    As an aquarium enthusiasts, I see no problem with San Francisco on this point. I tried to get my daughter to abandon the thought of getting a pet dog. Getting the goofy thing has changed that young couples life. Pooper-scoopers are worse than changing diapers. And babies grow up and take care of themselves usually before you get too tired of them. But, I feel sorry for all the pets I see on Animal Planet whose owners grew too tired or senile to continue the pets upkeep. Even Russian orphans have a country to go back to after their adoptors get tired of them.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:31 pm |
  31. Brian

    What? A ban on pets? What exactly is this going to do for the State's deficit?

    What a stupid idea.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:34 pm |
  32. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    With so many animals being euthanized, it seems like a great idea. Let people adopt from a shelter, if they want to care for a pet.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:39 pm |
  33. Georgia from PA

    WHY? Are people not caring for their pets and in turn there are colonies of rabid feral cats like NJ has experienced? Are dogs attacking people? Are parrots causing audio chaos or pooping on neighbors? WHY? Everyone should have a pet to learn unconditional love because humans have a hard time with that concept.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:42 pm |
  34. Steve, Clifton, VA

    Does this mean that you can't sell a race horse or cow or pig/hog? Why would it be okay to sell animal for commerce in terms of labor, entertainment, or food, but prohibit the sale of a pet for love?

    July 9, 2010 at 3:43 pm |
  35. Paul Austin, Texas

    I guess it is good for the fish looking for a good home. It should also be good for the animal shelters that have way to many animals just waiting to be someone's pet.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:43 pm |
  36. Mary, Front Royal VA

    That's a pretty open statement, Jack. Overall, probably a good idea. If pet shops, yes for not selling pups. Puppy mills are main suppliers and are notorius for misbreeding and overbreeding, plus mistreatment of animals. Cats and dogs should be bought from reputable breeders or from adoption centers. I'd think imported animals, reptiles, etc would have specific rules for import and that sales and are regulated. Small critters are yet another category. The main reason would be to prevent cruelty to and abuse of animals.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:45 pm |
  37. Bernie of Lowell, MA

    They'll have to rename their famous bridge to the Golden Retriever Bridge.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:49 pm |
  38. Sam

    Why the heck would they do that? You provide no explanation. Mayve they don't even know what they are doing. It wouldn't be the first time. But really, It's not a good idea to start banning sales for two reasons: we are a free market, capitalist society that depends upon buying and selling for our livelihood and standard of living, and with the California deficit billions of dollars deep, I doubt they can afford the arrogance and stupidity of losing goods for tax revenue.

    July 9, 2010 at 3:51 pm |
  39. MNResident

    Why allow fish? Is it a safety issue? Tell that to the person I know who got into physical issues with his pet piranhas and sharks. Besides, I know of another person (otherwise unmarried and childless) who treats her dogs as her "children". Pet ownership can get VERY personal, like all those who lamented after Hurricane Katrina about the lack of a government program to take care of the pets that were left behind. Some even refused to leave the devastated scene without their pets. For all their talk of being a tolerant, "sanctuary city", San Francisco is showing a true lack of tolerance here....

    July 9, 2010 at 3:53 pm |
  40. beenee bruce Canada

    absolutely .!!!.......i have been an animal lover for over fifty years ... and work with the Humane Society and the S.PC.A......we are constantly having to raise money to fund the millions of strays and unwanted pets that are abandoned and neglected..
    .also,, the puppy mills are the most ghastly treatment of these poor creatures. that can be imagined ....when they can no longer churn out those babies ..they are literally THROWN away ..we find them in the ditches by the side of the road.....it absolutely breaks your heart......force people who are looking for a pet to buy from a shelter s...they are just as lovable and will be a faithful and grateful member of the family ...

    July 9, 2010 at 4:05 pm |
  41. JOE CE

    San Francisco marches to a different beat, if they want to ban the sale of pets let them. I dopubt that thjis would have a significant influence on the number and type of pets owned in SF.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:05 pm |
  42. Rebekah

    Thank goodness people are getting smarter, there are way too many animals being killed in shelters. It's brilliant.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:06 pm |
  43. Dennis north Carolina

    this is a law that will spend tax payers money and make lawyers rich but will be struck down by a federal judge.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:09 pm |
  44. Michael

    People should have enough compassion and common sense to go to a shelter first. Unfortunately, there are people who need to overpay for an "accessory pet" which usually is only to make a fashion statement.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:10 pm |
  45. Adam Simi Valley, CA

    Yes...let's let the government of San Fran take care of all us stupid people who are too stupid to make their own pet choices now. Give me a break. SF is the epitomy of government interference. Personally I hate pets. Pet rocks are too much upkeep for me, but I wouldn't suppose to impose my view on anyone else. Who is it hurting? Can we sell San Fransisco to China in exchange to forgiveness of our debt. The people there would likely welcome the government change.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:13 pm |
  46. Jane (Minnesota)

    It's another example of a group of people's view trying to be forced on to the rest of the population. I volunteer in animal rescue, too and I see the sad results of people not making good choices and abandoning their pets – most I see now are because of the rotten economic situation that exists on Main Street – not because the pet isn't what they expected – that's short sighted.

    Banning the sales in one city is just pushing the problem down the road and not dealing wtih the core problem not controlling the animal population explosion.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:19 pm |
  47. Kevin of SD CA

    Great idea! While they’re at it they need to create a test that women and men need to take to be licensed before they have children also; that way they will be banning the ownership of the most useless of animals on the planet at the same time!

    July 9, 2010 at 4:23 pm |
  48. Joe in VA

    This is in fact a problem, like the cute Easter chicks that have the audacity to grow into chickens and crap all over the place. However, despite the best liberal intentions in the nation's capital of liberalism and "I know what is good for you", one cannot outlaw stupidity or irresponsibility. That's what SF is trying to do here. Interesting subject though, I'm always interested in the next big thing out of looney land. Oh yeah, there is that lady, what's her name- Pelosi?

    July 9, 2010 at 4:25 pm |
  49. Lori - PA

    Jack,

    No it's not. If San Francisco bans pet sales, store owners say "they'd have to go out of business". Given the state of the economy, can any city afford for any retail stores to close? Does San Francisco want to risk losing the tax revenue they would collect from retail sales pet stores generate? Do they want to have to pay out unemployment benefits for the people they would put out of work? Why not allow San Francisco pet stores to implement pet adoption programs for hamsters, rats, birds, snakes.....?

    July 9, 2010 at 4:28 pm |
  50. Terry in Chandler, AZ

    If the San Francisco city commission is crazy enough to pass an anti sale of pet ordinance, perhaps some attorney will be crazy enough to sue the city commission for violation of the 9th. Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. And there may be a judge crazy enough to apply the 9th Amendment, therefore making the ordinance invalid and illegal.
    Crazy isn't it Jack?

    July 9, 2010 at 4:29 pm |
  51. Wesley from NC

    This is another crazy idea from politicians who would rather voters focus on crazy ideas instead of the real issues. Also, this would put many people out of work because businesses would have to close. You know jack, no sale, no money and no jobs. I bet this had to come from one of Sharrons Angles tea Party friends.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:30 pm |
  52. jay in anaheim california

    Why do you insist on talking about things that have nothing to do with the loss of jobs in this country or the fact that the US debt continues to spiral out of control. If San Fransisco has an idea on how to get the millions of people back their jobs, then we can talk about them and not before

    July 9, 2010 at 4:30 pm |
  53. Weldon from Canada

    I think that the fish should also be included. Why have one species suffer and not the other??

    July 9, 2010 at 4:33 pm |
  54. Kevin in Kentucky

    Let me see if I got this right, Obama gives a tax break to small business owners, so they can stay in business and keep their employees working through this recession, at the same time San Francisco is masterminding an idea that would put some of them out of business and unemployed, is it just me or does that seem totaly redundant ?

    July 9, 2010 at 4:34 pm |
  55. Tom Mytoocents Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    Sounds good to me Jack

    July 9, 2010 at 4:35 pm |
  56. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    Definitely a good idea. Pet stores are a bad idea. If you want an animal you should buy it from a reputable breeder. Finding a good breeder will take the impulse aspect out of the cute and cuddly and the breeder will probably set you straight about care and feeding (and the downsides of the particular animal). It also makes it very likely you will get a healthy animal with good bloodlines.

    On the other hand, the only health requirement most pet store need to sell you something is that the animal has a heartbeat. Been there done that. I gave a vet ten times what I gave the pet store and the animal still died.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:36 pm |
  57. Jean in Arizona

    Not a bad idea when you consider the hundreds of thousands animals that are put down everyday in shelters.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:52 pm |
  58. Judie Wm's -- El Lago TX

    Hi Jack........

    A continuation of "they're living among us" !! Not certain of other states, but in Texas there are illegal puppy mills down any country road, yet to adopt from a shelter involves paperwork, background checks, etc. This law will fly when pigs do.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:53 pm |
  59. Kevin in Dallas

    If abandoned pets are such a problem in San Francisco that they have to outlaw the sale of pets, then we need to kick San Francisco out of the country.

    July 9, 2010 at 4:54 pm |
  60. Ed in Harrisburg

    Jack, this is a bad idea...but perhaps not for the reasons many might suggest. If city officials are really concerned about the proliferation of animals in the city, perhaps it might be a better idea to tax pet owners annually for their pet licenses with the understanding that as with a car or other licensed property, there is an annual fee affixed. The fees collected would be turned over to animal shelters to make adopting animals a more attractive option. Shutting down pet stores is analogues to opening up a peanut with a sledge hammer and obliterates an industry in an already difficult economy. People who buy or adopt pets must be held responsible and accountable for these soul, just as they would with with children. For this, they would be charged additional for their pets, an annual fee and perhaps even tax on food and other supplies, so that they may think twice about buying/adopting and then abandoning. Why punish responsible pet owners and pet store managers?

    July 9, 2010 at 4:56 pm |
  61. Dee in Woodstock GA

    What exactly is the problem with the hamsters? Are their owners just setting them loose, and then the hamsters begin to terrorize neighborhoods?

    I could understand banning the purchase of SNAKES. Just ask anyone who lives in Florida! Apparently there is a near epidemic of large snakes (Boas, Pythons) that owners have just set free and that are now invading neighborhoods.

    I can even understand dogs an cats, which when allowed to roam free can often become a real problem.

    But hamsters? Gimme a break! What else are all the dogs, cats, and snakes that have been released going to feed on?

    July 9, 2010 at 4:59 pm |
  62. Umberto Fantastiche

    Amazing idea.
    All states should do it.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
  63. JENNA

    San Francisco is considering banning the sale of pets, except fish. Good idea?

    I think that this is an excellent idea, except that those who live there will just go to other towns to "purchase" the animals if that is their desire.

    I say keep the pet shops and private breeders open – however regulate them more and do more surprise inspections to ensure that the animals are actually cared for.

    The best place to still get an animal is at the SPCA or local pet adoption agency. Remember, older pets are not bad, they are experienced. Out of the puppy/kitten phase.

    Have your pets spade or neutered!

    Jenna
    Roseville CA

    July 9, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
  64. Andrew Amherst NY

    So much for capitalism in the Liberal capital of the world!
    Hey, didn't we just spend 20 MILLION dollars in San Fran to study a rat?

    July 9, 2010 at 5:08 pm |
  65. Tony from Southport

    I haven't heard or seen anything in San Francisco with which I agree.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:10 pm |
  66. Jeff M

    This is the dumbest thing along with taxing internet purchases I have ever heard from politicians and if passed it would be the dumbest law in the country.

    *Sarcasm on/ Honestly I am shocked the federal government hasn't passed a law saying NO PETS ALLOWED to "protect children" /Sarcasm off*

    July 9, 2010 at 5:13 pm |
  67. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Bad idea! Extreme reaction to a situation that actually has solutions. Make a regulation where per household people cannot own more than X number of pets which includes the caged animals! Make it harder for people to own a pet and be responsible about it bty having to buy a licence for the pet in case it gets lost or in case of irresponsible owner...for example if someone from my neighborhood has to call for finding a lost dog; since the dog must have its licence then the owner is charged a penalty for not having properly taking care of his dog and if someone repeatly loses their dog the fine gets higher! There are ways to reduce irresponsible human behaviors without closing shop$!

    July 9, 2010 at 5:14 pm |
  68. Bruce

    Vote with your feet – leave the insanity.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:18 pm |
  69. victor

    stop :Breeding Mills"

    and hamsters etc.

    Private owners who breed – may be allowed a certain number
    per year .

    July 9, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  70. Paulette in Dallas,PA

    Not a bad idea and may someday become a reality. t would help eliminate strays,help shelters get loving homes for their animals and be very instrumental in shutting down horrifying puppy mills.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  71. Mitchel Coon

    Saying you can only buy fish is stupid. fish are just as hard to take care of and it will not stop other animals to end up in shelters, all it will do is make pet shops go out of business!

    July 9, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  72. Tessa

    It's an awesome idea! It would be one step closer to putting an end to animal mills, & it would raise the number of pets adopted from shelters. How can you go wrong with that when there are so MANY lives to be saved?

    July 9, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  73. supercutter

    hey jack,
    enough of these cotton candy stories. How about some real news.....like kill some crackers and their babies. You know the DOJ looking the other way as long as the hate crime is done aginst whites. Gee the White House will not let CNN to do real facts if it makes them look bad.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  74. Lauren Elizabeth Richards

    Sounds like a wonderful idea to me! I can't count the number of times I've heard someone talk about getting sick of taking care of an animal. People buy them thinking they're cute, and forget about all of the work that goes into having a pet. Way to go, San Francisco!

    Lauren Elizabeth Richards
    Auburn, AL

    July 9, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  75. Gigi Oregon

    It works for me. How's the real estate in San Francisco. I watch people buying better food for their pets than they do their kids. They haven't jobs but they buy a dog to keep them company. I had to laugh at my grand kids. They sold everything to get their masters in education, great thing, until I heard ... plus an insurance policy for their bull dog in case he got sick.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  76. John from San Antonio

    Very good idea! Fish should be included. Just go into a pet store and see how fish are kept in a jar they can't even move in and they are kept there for weeks. These are all living creatures and must suffer the consequences of the greed of man. For the sake of profit dogs are kept in puppy mills under the most inhumane conditions and bred continuously until they die at a young age for the sake of profit.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:29 pm |
  77. Maria

    I think it's very healthy to have this debate, but realistically I can't see how such a ban would be enforced, or even if it should be enforced. I'm a dedicated animal shelter volunteer, have two dogs I've adopted from shelters, and would love to see the abuse of animals stop. That said, this ban sounds like throwing oil on the fire. What would result, I'm afraid, is a climb in the numbers of abused animals adopted for abuse, despite the great effort from animal control officials to keep that from happening. Until there are stiff laws, with enforceable penalties for animal abuse to indicate our society will no longer accept this behavior..only then will we see a huge effort to save abused animals.

    Maria

    Brunswick,MD

    July 9, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  78. Bob in Kansas City

    Coming from San Fransisco?.....no more needs to be said, I lived there for 46 years and the current crop of public servants are all "out to lunch".

    It used to be a great place to live but this bunch does nothing but raise taxes and fees and expands the city budget for every group of that comes to city hall with their hand out and a "you owe me" attitude.

    And yes, they can ban pet sales but if someone wants one all they have to do is go outside of the city limits.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:40 pm |
  79. Sharon Zingery, Chicago

    Purchase of shelter, or would-be sheltered, pets should be encouraged, of course. BUT, the average purchaser of pets needs assurance the pets are healthy and have recourse for receiving ill pets. If pets are only available from private sales and strangers, fewer people will adopt. It is also not all that hard to go to a nearby city where people can purchase pets and pay taxes on the purchase in that city and keep people employed in that city. Seems self defeating and not actually protective of pets.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:40 pm |
  80. Barbara

    Please adopt from petfinder.com. I did and have gotten so much happiness from saving an animal in need. They have every kind of breed you can think of. My little guy is so wonderful!

    July 9, 2010 at 5:40 pm |
  81. Michael Armstrong Sr.

    San Fransisco is over stepping there authority America is getting closer and closer to communism .

    July 9, 2010 at 5:45 pm |
  82. chris brown fl

    i think this is just another bad political idea. if you ban the sale of them then probably no one will have them. people will be raising their kids with no appreciation of nature not to mention the companionship how can you explain to kids that you need parks and estuaries and protection of endanger species when they never experienced animals not to mention why you should not have oil spills

    July 9, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
  83. Don Alfera

    How messed up can it be that we still to this day think it is ok to make a buck off of selling life. Life of any kind is still life. Why is it that we are so hi-n-mighty that the life that is free can be captured and sold for profit and control and things that are desired can be bred in controlled situations and then that animal gets sold. The lesser of the breed is destroyed, then there is the pet variety and we should never forget the different levels of "Show" quality...... All of course have a different dollar value assigned. I agree for whatever the reason, the stop selling animals as "Expenditable Life" as the final result, the means might very well assist in justification of the means.

    July 9, 2010 at 5:58 pm |
  84. Phil-WA State

    What brought all this on? Glad I'm not a resident of California.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:00 pm |
  85. Dan from Southington

    While there has been a cultural shift from treating animals as pets to treating them as members of the family, this idea goes too far. A fair compromise could be banning the sale of all animals from puppy mills.Those breeders need to be housed in the awful cages they leave the animals in.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:03 pm |
  86. Rob Freedman

    Yes, this is a great idea and more cities should do this. A lot of public resources are spent to care for, foster, re-home, or (unfortunately)dispose of unwanted pets. Such provisions would help make more places no-kill cities and towns. There are enough responsible ways for people to acquire companion pets. The extra effort this would cause would make people think twice.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:04 pm |
  87. Joseph Leff

    There's something fishy about this, Jack.

    Joe in Delray Beach, Florida

    July 9, 2010 at 6:05 pm |
  88. Annie, Atlanta

    I find little furry and feathery animals on display in cages distasteful, to put it mildly. However, what next? What other businesses would we close down because of potential stress on the system. This could get out of hand.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:13 pm |
  89. bob landschoot

    sad animals are not owned by people, they are an intergal part of many familes.. Every dog needs a family to care for, not the reverse, Cats are cats if you please, and cats if you don't please

    must be tough having to hate something that' can't respond

    July 9, 2010 at 6:13 pm |
  90. Sinikka

    Excellent idea!!!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  91. Carl O. Harris

    Why don't the petstore adopt them for resale? What happened to recycling?

    July 9, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  92. Brendan

    I fully support this idea. It should be nationwide. I'll add that people should not be able to breed animals without a permit from the government. There are so many wonderful animals that can be adopted from shelters. People need to think about how much time and money is required to take care of a pet, not just buy one on the spot. This law will prevent this, and prevent animals being dumped on the side of the road, which I have seen far too many times in my lfe.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  93. Tim in Texas

    It's a good idea. I would make one modification. Allow people to buy pets within the city limits, but only after a waiting period of a week. Far too many people buy pets, as you say, as impulse buys.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  94. Bruce in Richmond, VA

    Great idea. Hopefully will pass and also accepted throughout the country. About time to care about shelter animals.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  95. charles thompson

    Best idea I have heard in a long while. Another reason why San Fran is so progrressive.
    charles thompson
    S.C.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  96. kim washington

    I think it is FANTASTIC!!! So many animals are euthanized in the usa. I wish every stated would adopt this law. Pet stores will still make the money on the pet supplies & fish. Most aniimals from Pet Stores are way over-priced & end up sick anyway.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  97. JIMMY PALMIERI

    this is the greatest news! it prevents dogs and cats and rabbits and all other shelter pets from being euthanized. it cuts down on puppy mills which as we all know are cruel life sentences for the breeding dogs and their puppies. it also will cut back on broken hearts from purchasing puppy mill animals, when they per usual get sick, die or cost thousands which most people do not have in order to keep them alive. please support this. it is the kindest thing that can be done for shelter animals, puppy mill victims, and street or parking lot puppy sales. the pet stores can sell food, clothing and anythig else pertaining to animals.
    thanks for the report.
    jimmy palmieri

    July 9, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  98. Gary Bowden

    Would we have this problem if we spade and neutered our pets first?? There is an overpopulation of dogs and cats and I think the Humane Society should figure a way out to where people who can't afford to spade or neuter their pets,could make some payment arrangement with them until they paid it off..We humans are to blame for the overpopulation and this is the result..

    July 9, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  99. Sarah

    What a forward-thinking and compassionate idea! Given the number of animals in shelters, this may be the best way to satisfy both a prospective pet owner's desire for companionship and save an animal's life.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  100. Allyson from Seattle

    This is a fantastic idea. Seems to me like many people want puppies and kittens because they're "cuter" or they don't like an idea of a pre-owned animal. As a result, vanity triumphs over giving a homeless animal a second chance.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  101. Rob in Saratoga Springs, NY

    I think this is a wonderful idea. The pet store owners complain that they will go out of business, but the pets in their stores would complain more if they could speak. The pets in most pets stores come from conditions that are horribly inhumane. These "puppy mills" that we've heard about for years are the real problem. I think a law like this would help solve this problem and help to prevent overpopulation and unnecessary euthanization.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  102. Carole Cerase

    I agree, I have recently moved to North Carolina, where the shelters are over loaded and the state does absolutely nothing about animal control. My husband volunteers at our local human society which is a no kill, but the regular shelters kill more animals that you can imagine. Stopping pet shops is not enough, you have to stop the backyard breeders or nothing will change.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  103. Julie Rosser

    I live in Edson, Alberta, Canada, and I believe this to be the best idea I have ever heard. I hope they make this a world wide law! Adoption of pets is the best thing to do, because it will reduce impulse purchases as well as put places such as puppy mills out of business. There is way too much animal abuse and neglect in our world. GO SAN FRAN!!!!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  104. Dale A. Wood

    The idea of outlawing the sale of pet animals is a great one – a move really in the right direction.

    Thus is especially a great move considering how many potential pets (homeless) are available at little or no cost from amimal shelters or from pet owners who can no longer afford to take care of them – or who are in the process of moving a way a long distance.
    D.A.W.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  105. Ted

    Good idea. Hamsters also get loose and lost in the house. It is bad for dogs and cats, too, when owners tire of them.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  106. Chris

    Seems as if everything is banned in California these days.... I think there are better ways to control the number of unwanted pets. Putting small businesses such as pet stores in bankrutcy court will solve nothing. I am glad I do not live in California.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  107. Daisy Pennell

    They could solve the problem by giving everyone who purchases a rodent (hamster, gerbil, rat, rabbit) a free shelter cat as a bonus. Kind of like the Buy 1 Get 1 free the grocery stores do.

    Daisy, Granby Massachusetts

    July 9, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  108. Neil

    Why discriminate against fish? They should also be a protected class.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  109. Fernando

    I think its a great idea. We all know how pet shops don't care about animals and torture them. The only think they do care is money. There are 1000's of animals in shelters waiting for adoption or death, and I see no point in allowing pet shops to profit from suffering animals. Would you like to be in a display window exposed to the sun and hundreds of people shouting and poking the glass at you the whole day?

    July 9, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  110. Dave

    Yes – people determine, too late, that they don't have the time or patience to properly care for pets and dispose of them as if they were a cigarette butt.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  111. kim washington

    This may also open up the door to stop the horrible situations for those who call themselves BREEDERS.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  112. robert stamey

    not a good first step.
    an expensive owner fee and license renewal fee would be a better deterrent and would help pay for the euthanasia.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  113. Nick Maffia - Charleston, SC

    GREAT IDEA! I have three dogs and three cats which came from an animal shelter. I hope they will be able to pass such a law. They have my vote.....

    July 9, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  114. Mark J. Engler

    Overall this is a wonderful idea for pets and animals, despite the fact that pet store owners and employees would be negatively affected. I think we should understand this as a case of eminent domain of the rights of the animal kingdom, including humans who are guilty of animal genocide, over the small minority who would lose profit. Thank you San Francisco from all us animal rights activists and the billions of animals victimized by human aggression and cruelty!!!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  115. Bobbie

    EXCELLENT IDEA!! Maybe it'll help all those forgotten animals in the shelters find a comfortable home, instead of spending their days in a cement floored cell. Hope the city leaders pass it, and other cities adopt the policy as well. To heck with the pet stores. Most of them are just selling animals from puppy mills anyway!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  116. Amanda Fort Erie, Ontario

    I do understand the concept of banning the sale of specific animals in pet stores like Dogs and Cats since many dogs in Pet Stores come from puppy mills and people pay unbelievable amounts of money at the pet store for many sick animals. I know that wasn't the reason for the ban. I do agree adopting certain animals from humane societies since many actually screen owners before hand and make sure the animal is well, here in Ontario, Canada anyway when I've adopted many animals from the humane society or adoption centres from foster care givers. But just fish to be sold, not hamsters, or lizards or small birds I don't know about that. I don't know anyone who adopted a hamster who got rid of it afterward especially since they only have a lifespan usually of 3 years.

    I know pet store owners have a problem with this because of lost revenue for their overpricing of adoption but if they truly care about the animals, TLC is something that you can't put a price on.

    T.G.I.F. Mr. Jack Cafferty .. have a great and safe weekend!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  117. Alex

    Hell YES its a good idea! I've been rescuing, fostering, & adopting out unwanted dogs & cats for years. The things I have seen are nothing short of tragic & infuriating. Many people see animals as living toys & when they find themselves bored or inconvinienced, they dump their unlucky pet on the side of the road, or worse, neglect it to death. I would love nothing more than to see all breeders & pet sellers go out of business (at least until all shelters are empty)!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  118. Linda Inman

    I think this is a great idea. Puppy mills need to be stopped, and many people have a throw away attitude towards animals. People need to be educated on pet care before they are allowed to own them.
    All this death and suffering is outrageuos!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  119. Donna from San Diego

    This is a great idea. Get people to really think twice about the comittment to owning a pet. More cities should adopt this policy. Not only would this encourage adoption but perhaps this could help the cause to shutting down puppy mills.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  120. trish

    I volunteer in CT for a shelter that takes in full bred and loving animails that have been deserted in back yards due to foreclosures and families that cannot take them with them as they downsize to apts due to this economy. These pets are healthier than any puppy/cat mill or vendor of pets. All pet sales should be banned in the US as we cannot control the pet population already! These mills should be shut down as many or most of theses animals are ill due to poor living environments! Please post this comment as these animals are now being euthanized for overcrowding – this is unacceptable! This has to stop and I applaud San Fransisco for bringing this to light!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  121. Gabe From PA

    I think this is a great idea! Animal shelters are overwhelmed, especially with cats and dogs which is why so many end up getting put to sleep. Banning pet stores from selling animals won't completely eliminate the problem but will definitely lessen the load in shelters. Not to mention most pet store animals come from puppy mills so this will also help in that department.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  122. Ryan

    Absolutely. Too many people spend hundreds of dollars on designer pets, many of which have deformities and health issues due to inbreeding, when countless neglected animals who never had a fair shake sit and wait for the death sentence in shelters. Shelter dogs and cats are the best. Loyal, intelligent, and most importantly, grateful!
    Ryan in Savannah

    July 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  123. Chloe

    Definitly not! No. Kids love pets, and so do adults. What happens after they ban it? What is that sad lonely little boy with no friends gonna say when he finds out his Christmas present was from a best friend to a pair of socks? Pets, all pets are loved at some point or another (the ones we actually buy) and they've been loved, sometimes love doesn't last. Marrige doesn't always last? The replacment ship between animals don't last, the people who kill there pets are just sick and don't deserve something as loving as a rabbit, or a bitd or even a turtle. But everything happens for a reason, so all the pets killed all of them thrown away, it was just ment to be.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  124. Beth Windsor

    I fully support the pet ban. It's time to shut down the mills that produce animals in mass quantity. Go to the shelters or breeders and STOP buying pets at the pet stores!!!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  125. Alan

    Pets should only be sold by registered, reputable breeders and their should be a mandatory class, registration requirement before buying,getting a pet, so you are taught how to properly care for a pet.
    Today, Pets are being treated as commodities. i.e Buy, discard if you don't like them. Which is clearly wrong & horrifyingly painful for the poor animal.
    By tightly regulating who can breed,sell pets, and heavy education for the owners, we will see healthier pets and less need to euthanize unwanted pets. Maybe less profit for the industry, but we have to do whats right, not the most profitable.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  126. Mike O.

    A good start. Aside from what you have said, I t will reduce the number of strays which are are a huge public health problem. it will reduce the sale of contraband animals, as well as potentially invasive species (certain birds) that could have an impact on areas with benign climates like San Francisco.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  127. Carl O. Harris

    If people Craiglisted thier unwanted critters, there would be no guilty feeling when the shelter puts thier hand out.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  128. sue

    I think it is right for the lawmakers in SanFrancisco to be thinking about ways to encourage the adoption of shelter animals, over the sale of pure breeds. Perhaps this law could be enforced for a period of time to see if their theory really works. I appplaud the progressive thinking. Too many perfectly healthy, young animals get eunthanized daily and it's sickening!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  129. Valerie Tower

    I ABSOLUTELY support this law. I live in NC and we have one shelter here that has over 1000 pets they are trying to adopt out! Until all homeless and shelter animals are adopted into good homes, we MUST stop the sale and breeding of animals. As for the pet stores losing revenue, I don't buy that at all. They are not making their profits selling animals. They are making profits on pet supplies, pet food, accessories, etc and this wouldn't be affected. I don't understand how any one can look into the eyes of a homeless pet and not support this law. I only wish I lived in San Francisco to support this.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  130. Jeannette Rassam

    California is always ahead when it comes to important issues. This time saving the life of animals. Selling animals for profit is a mean business. Responsible petshops like Petsmart or Petco in my area never sell animals. You can help by adopting pets from shelters. Hamsters, reptiles, cats, dogs etc. are totally dependent on us, they have been bred to be "pets". Go to your local shelter and save a life and enjoy your good deed.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  131. Sharon

    Isn't being able to adopt only fish discriminating against dogs, cats, monkeys, birds, etc.? Fish are not easily kept alive. Wouldn't San Francisco find their sewers clogged after awhile? Seriously, adopting from shelters is great, but I do think that if this idea becomes law that there would be lawsuits. I Can see it now: Snoopy, Garfield VS the City of San Francisco.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  132. a.c.

    Whats crazy about providing health care and wanting to stop animal abuse. The rest of country should take its cues from San Francisco. The housing melt down has shown that even cats and dogs are nothing more than commodities to many people. Would you abandon your child if you were broke? Actually...consider the amount of abandon and abused children. Creating a climate where accountability and responsibility is the law will begin to stop the cruelty to animals. Children may have to wait longer.

    Whats that famous quote on how to regard the success of a civilization by looking at how it treats its animals...?

    One of the few things I can like about m y country is that it does have the luxury to care about animals despite the collective brain damage with regards to the amount of animals killed through environmental rape.

    Good on SF for taking a bold step.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  133. Brenda

    Selling cats and dogs should be illegal everywhere. 4 million unwanted cats and dogs are euthanized every year because there are not enough homes for them. People should be reminded that adopting is saving a life. Many of the animals in pet stores are purchased from overcrowded mills where the animals are neglected and abused. Small animals are a responsibility much like a child; if you decide to get a pet you are fully responsible for that pet’s health and wellbeing.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  134. Jim

    Great Idea, you know this is the problem with everything. People only look at whats good for them at the moment, but the poor souls who have to collect the unwanted pets suffer the real consequence. How about this for every person who buys a pet sign an agreement to except 2 unwanted pets of the same kind the they already have. That should not be a problem considering they must like the animal enough to have one, and besides you don't want to see the poor little creature put down do you?Now this is what I call looking out for the animals

    Jim
    Arkansas

    July 9, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  135. Rena

    Jack – it's a great idea IF San Francisco also increases grants to private rescue organizations and provides an incentives to pet stores to place adoption centers in their stores. If they do these things, everyone wins. Pet stores stay in business, prospective adopters are counseled, screened and sign an adoption contract, and most importantly – homeless animals find a loving, responsible home.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  136. james

    The motives sound good. I question what the outcome would be. Wouldn't pet stores simply stop keeping an actual store and start selling via classified ads? It seems to me it might in fact lead to more of the so called "puppy mills" over-breeding dogs until the mother dies, which would of course be completely counter-productive.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  137. Michael Armstrong Sr.

    That going to be really hard on the Petco and Pet Smart I bet they fight the law .

    July 9, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  138. gwynne

    Good idea. It promotes saving existing lives and discourages market demand to make more lives when lives in need already exist. The balance is off. We are all a melting pot of mixed races, why do the animals have to be a breed? Love is love, look in their eyes + take one home.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  139. Tasha (Indianapolis, IN)

    As a proud parent of a rescue dog, I fully support the ban. Sadly, many people in our society do not realize the joy of adoption and/or are driven only to acquire something "new." Until there is universal awareness that new does not necessarily equal better, bans like this are necessary.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  140. Roman Stehling

    I think it's a very good measure of the city of SF! It is a start to end cruelty against pets. They are currently traded like goods. But they are not. They are actual beings who can feel like we can. They don't belong in stores. SF starts to restore their right to dignity and respect. Go adopt them from shelters a d stop the trade!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  141. Charles Stevens

    I have been dreaming of ideas like this for a long time. I love animals
    and it breaks my heart when i think about all the animals that are killed because someone had to have a puppy for Christmas and two weeks later it's in the SPCA.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  142. Eric Wasek

    This is one of the outrageous and stupid acts I have ever heard a city government consider. What good could come out of banning pets. If this act goes through and becomes law, all that will come out of this is turmoil and objection. A city government should spend more time tending to more urgent and important isssues, rather than complicating people's lives. I am not a pet lover myself, but I do not believe in restraining the rights of people to own and love pets.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  143. Greg

    I think this is absolutely a good idea Jack! Animals should not be commodities. Studies have should that most of these animals (rodents, cats, dogs, etc) feel the same range of emotions that we humans feel. I am not against having pets, but we all need to recognize that animals have feelings, and can suffer just like we suffer. Therefore they should not be bought and sold like items at retail store. Adopting a pet from a shelter makes people happy, helps the animals, and treats them with respect they deserve.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  144. Jeremy from Michigan

    I don't like that the government seems to have a law about everything we do in our lives, but this is one I can understand. People should think before they get a pet. They are not toys or play-things, they are living creatures. It's a real shame how many animals get euthanized.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  145. Steve in Las Vegas,NV

    Oh Great! Yet another nanny law that won't work! Just brilliant!

    If they only make adoptions really affordable, so people can afford to adopt a shelter animal, it might have a chance.

    Most shelters have such high prices, and make it difficult to adopt, that it's futile. Unfortunately, some pet shops sell "puppy mill" puppies, so beware of that too!!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  146. Joe Begovich

    Being born and raised in San Francisco, it is a GREAT idea... Think about it for a minute.... Currently every year there are 8 million pets being euthanized in shelters every year... There are 2 simple solutions to this problkem. 1 dont buy pets from pet stores ADOPT 2 Spay/Neuter your pets
    There are tons of different pets in san francisco shelters that are purebread and who are just the same as getting them from a pet store..... So make your desicion help lower the 8 million animals that are being euthanized each year, by adopting an animal or by a pet from a pet store which will take away a chance for a shelter animal to get adopted

    Joseph Begovich
    San Francisco, California

    July 9, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  147. Jenny

    Why not pass a regulation that pet stores have to have a certain percentage of shelter animals available for adoption in their stores? The issue is convincing people that shelter animals are sweet, loving, wonderful pets. Rather than putting pet store owners out of business in SF, why not focus on the puppy mills? Let's face it, the SF Bay area is one huge mass of cities. It won't be hard at all for people to go to the city next door and get what they want. Again, the focus should be on WHERE these stores get their animals.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  148. slbalter

    Cutting off the business of the pet stores wont eradicate the source of the reason animal shelters are overcrowded. Irresponsible pet owners need to be forced into accountability. A serious pet owner should be required to register his/her pet with a tag implant. Serious fines should be imposed upon owners who don't get their pets spayed/neutered, or who have to relinquish them to shelters. A pet is a life, not a commodity, and the blasted pet stores selling frou-frou trendy mixes that end up getting dumped like last year's shoes need to regulate the sale of pets to registered, responsible owners who are informed of heavy consequences....

    July 9, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  149. Jo Pilla

    Peddling flesh has aways given me pain. And pet store owners are like republicans: heartless...with money their bottom line. Hooray for San Francisco.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  150. Pat

    I commend their intentions but I question the legality of trying to legislate "common sense".Or as Forrest Gump put it more succinctly "You can't fix stupid".

    July 9, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  151. Denise - Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    Jack, It is a great idea. Here in south Florida we have a huge problem with Iguanas and pythons that have been let loose into the wild after owners decide, for what ever reason, that they don't want them any more. These animals are not indigenous to the area and have proliferated to tens of thousands being both dangerous and destructive to the indigenous plants and animals and human beings. Thanks to the impluse buyers of these animals not fully being responsible for their actions by letting them loose to breed, now it is costing my tax dollars to try to get rid of them.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  152. Bert in PR

    This is just another of many cases in which the whole population, of a city in this instance, would be forced to comply with rules meant to compensate for the stupidity of a few. In addition, its a slap in the face to responsible and happy pet owning citizens. I really feel offended.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  153. Birddog in Mississippi

    It's a great idea. I am sick of all these people who own expensive pets that have been inbred for decades or are lifted out of their natural habitats claiming 'compassion.' What a bunch of bull. Get a pet at a shelter. One pet, maybe two, not forty and not one of those freaky inbred things – that's heartless. And not one of those 'exotic' things – which is also heartless.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  154. Maneck N. Bhujwala

    Yes, I agree. Pet mills cause lot of cruelty also.
    At least there should be a moratorium on pet sales until all animals in the animal shelters are adopted.

    Maneck Bhujwala
    Huntington Beach, California

    July 9, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  155. Pat Evans

    Jack
    I think it would be avery good idea. 6 yrs ago we bought a Bichon/beagle mix, from a puppy farm. Never heard the phrase puppy mill. We love our dog, but we have spent hundreds and hundreds of dollars on her. She is allergic to everything. I think she's spent more time at the vets than home. We rescued a Jack Russel terrier (he's the love of my life.) He has been with us for 2 years and he has been to the vet to be nutered and his shots.
    He did gert a splinter in his foot.
    A puppy mill is where most of these dog are born I hope they shut them down too.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  156. randy harris

    Leave it to San Francisco to be on the cutting edge of humanity once again. Promoting adoption is a positive solution for many species including our own. If shutting down the puppy (and whatever else) mills, means putting a few short-sighted pet shop owners out of business then so be it. They can't legitimately claim that the bulk of their profit comes from the sale of animals anyway...it's all the accessories and maintenance that come with it. I do however question the exclusion of fish...or at least tropical ones. Do the research on the destruction caused in obtaining them. One step at a time though..

    Randy from San Diego

    July 9, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  157. Dolmar, CO

    There are so many wonderful animals who need homes that are available for free from pet rescue agencies, it makes no sense to sell additional animals in pet shops. When millions of abandoned pets are being euthanized, why add even more? Oh yes...it must have something to do with corporate profit.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  158. Julie Barezinsky

    Banning pets sounds like a bad idea, and unfair to the pet store owners. Why not just put a big tax on the purchase of pets, who would make a lot of people stop and think before making a purchase. The money should go to the Humane Society, who end up caring for all the discarded animals.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  159. CathyH

    I'm a huge animal-rights person, but I STRONGLY DISAGREE with San Fran's proposal. I understand what's behind their thinking, but prohibition of animal sales will work about as well as prohibition of liquor did earlier in our history. People will still buy from local breeders (the good ones and the bad ones), or purchase from other CA cities or other states.

    The country's current economic situation is very discouraging, but as soon as money becomes available again, MORE TEETH should be put in existing laws (i.e., shut down puppy mills) by hiring more animal-law enforcers.

    Also, I'd like to see a couple of hours per month set aside in grade schools for local animal humane groups to bring in the whole gamut of animal companions (including hamsters) and educate kids on how to care for them. Sometimes you may have to give up on the adult cretins, and put your faith in the upcoming generations.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  160. Joe Begovich

    This ban is not closing down pet stores...then can still sell other thinks like pet food grooming supplies etc....theyll still be able to stay in buisness

    July 9, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  161. Stef in Moraga

    This is a GREAT idea!!! HALF of all dogs in shelters countrywide are euthanized each year, and dogs in puppy mills are treated cruelly and inhumanely. The dogs that are born on these puppy mills are sold in pet stores, and they lessen the chance of the dogs in the shelters to be adopted. If such a trade were banned in San Francisco, it would hopefully be the start of the end of puppy mills.
    Also, not only dogs would be saved, but all other companion animals would be, too!
    Banning the selling of companion animals is a lot to ask, though. If the request is too extreme, maybe the city should either require all companion animals to be spayed or neutered, or illegalize the individual breeding of these animals.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  162. Michael Armstrong Sr.

    See this whats really bad about the people in charge instead of thinking of something that will not hurt the people they do things that will kill jobs and move company's away and in return loose revenue why not be economy friendly and Spay and Neuter all pets before they can be sold this will keep every one happy and still have jobs .

    July 9, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  163. Whitney

    YES! It forces people to really put thought into the commitment of being responsible for a living creature for the duration of it's life. Just having to drive a bit further to another town forces more commitment then simply going to the mall for a pair of shoes and coming home with a "cute" puppy. And a visit to your local shelter is a quick and sad reality check on what happens to those cute puppies when they are abandoned.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  164. Liz

    I wonder how such a law, if passed, would treat those foster families who take in sick or stray animals and ask for a small "rehoming" fee when they are ready for permanent adoption, such as you often see on craigslist or petfinder.com? These people are certainly not interested in profiting from animal life. They spend their personal time and money on these animals' medical treatment and food, and are only looking to be partially reimbursed for their costs towards what is ultimately the adoptee's pet. It's really important that any legislation address this distinction. Failure to do so might discourage kind and generous foster families from the life-saving work they do.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  165. Steve in Las Vegas,NV

    S.F might consider a law similar to what we have here in Las Vegas, and that is any pet dog or cat MUST be spayed or neutered at the age of 4 months or the owner will face a large fine AND still have the pet sterilized. There are provisions for real breeders(licensed and approved) and other exceptions, but are few.

    It's still too early to see the effect, but should cut down on the population of unwanted pets.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  166. Kelly

    I agree with Russ...let's ban beer, bacon, tanning salons, cigars etc. Oh and let's throw parents in jail who can't make it to parent-teacher conferences too. blah blah blah. This country has gone insane! Its like you can't step out of your designated square these days without getting slapped with a fine. Who are electing these losers?!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  167. Carol McCartney

    This is just another example of the government running amuck. This is America, if I want to buy my child a hampster, there shouldn't be a law against it. I know that there are a lot of people that are not responsible pet owners, but don't penalize the ones that are with more government regulation! There has got to be another answer.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  168. Chris

    Why not fish? How much does it cost water treatment plants to filter fish that people simply flush? Go all the way California... get rid of fish too!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:36 pm |
  169. Joe

    To clarify theyre not "banning" pets.... you can still get an animal from the classifieds or from the animal shelter

    July 9, 2010 at 6:36 pm |
  170. Brian Shapiro

    I applaud San Francisco's move. As the Director of an animal shelter in New York Sate, I see many small animals and pets treated like toys and then negelcted or discarded when they become a nuisance. Enacting this law would go a long way toward reducing the needless suffering of animals.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  171. Sherry Ann from Shreveport LA

    Are you kidding? How many people adopt hamsters from an animal shelter? Their lifespan is so short, I doubt they'd survive the trip home from the shelter! Perhaps it might be better to discern between animals that can cause an unbalance in nature. Perhaps we ought limit the number of children people can have, also. Land of the free?

    July 9, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  172. Karen

    Yhis is an excellent idea the ban on all pet sales should be nation wide. Breeders of all these animals have been profitting from their normal desire to procreate. People buy hamsters, ferrets etc. not knowing how these animals need to be kept . Then after smell and mess not to mention noise, the owners dump them on shelters or worse another person who doesn't know how to care for this animal properly.. it is humane to stop these sales . Iti's sad to actually find starved or tortured rodents due to neglect or unhealthy captivity. I have had to rescue ferrets who have been kept in their own filth so long the the urine had burned their toes ott.Shelters are over burdened and people don't want a shelter pet , unfortunately they are put to death . There are not enough true animal lovers to appreciate this legal reform. .Action needs to be taken to help these unfortunate animals and educate

    July 9, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  173. Lyn

    Good idea. It should be against the law to keep Hamsters/mice/rats, for sure. They multiply big time.
    It might be a good thing if Pet store owners did go out of business, as a lot of the pets are sick etc.
    Don't get me wrong, my pet is a cement dog. It doesn't stay in the house slobbering on the furniture, get hair all over the place, nor poop all over the house.
    If you want an animal, that is the very best kind.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  174. Kim Lores

    Excellent!! I am heavily involved in animal rescue and have two rescue dogs. The sale of animals is complete exploitation. These animals come from puppy mills or similar horrific conditions. There are over 4 million animals euthanized per year in the United States alone. Anyone profiting off of the sale of live animals is just as responsible as the abusers themselves. Animals are not ours to do with as we choose. As the stewards of the world, we simply must do better by them. For any person with decency and a conscience, if they knew a sliver of what puppy mill conditions were, they would become activists themselves. It's simply easier for people not to know. The turn away from the horrors that they can not for a moment look at. How awful. Yeah San Francisco! California, always first, then the rest of the Country. Best news I've had all day!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:44 pm |
  175. A.B.

    I support the ordinance. Most people do not understand the animals that they buy as pets and the expense and risks associated with keeping them. Most of those exotic pets are often wild animals that are taken out of their natural environment and placed into a domesticated setting. Once people get tired of keeping the animal or realize the enormous responsibility of keeping these animals, they let the animals go and they multiply and cause more environmental problems. Take Florida as an example of a place out of control with an exploding exotic animal population. People need to understand and learn things about any exotic animal or domestic animal before they decide to keep that animal as a pet.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  176. Dale A. Wood

    Someone wrote this, and it is absolutely correct:

    "By the way, a fish is not a pet, just a decoration that you have to feed!"

    Fish do not belong in the same category of pets – because fish are absolutely unaware of human beings and cannot really interact with them.

    On the other hand, pet mammals, birds, lizards, and snakes are at least aware of human beings, and many species can interact with humans.

    There are way too many four-legged "pets" that are treated cruelly, underfed, and/or created by cruel and thoughtless pet mills, and then sold.

    Putting emphasis on the adoption of available animals is just the way to go. Great Idea, San Francisco.
    DAW

    July 9, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  177. john mockus

    jack
    i am part of a small group of volunteers who TNR ( trap neuter release ) feral cats . as the economy goes so go the pets. we see more tame pets put out now due to relocations of owners into no pet situations. Although i think a ban is over the top. I do believe all pets sold commercially or through shelters should have to be micro chipped. it is now a cheap procedure of about 50 dollars. This would give us a positive return on bad pet owners. ALSO, unless purchased for breeding. all pets sold be spayed or neutured.

    john mockus

    worcester mass

    July 9, 2010 at 6:46 pm |
  178. Jim

    After reading one of the blogs prove to me a point I always thought that Americans thing is good. We create businesses whether good or bad to create jobs. So the economy is bad and people will loose their jobs. Well how about the animals being abused and/or being killed. Its just like crime, we can put a stop to crime but what would happen to all the people who work in the prisons. We have more people creating pills for ailments then we have people creating cures.

    Jim
    Arkansas

    July 9, 2010 at 6:47 pm |
  179. Karen

    These poor animals can't speak for themselves, we desperately need this ban. Shelters are too full of all types pf unwanted pets from dogs and cats to reptiles and rodents.. If people really want these animals, going to the shelters is the best way to help support your local shelter. and save another pet from being killed.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:50 pm |
  180. Melissa

    BAN the sale of pets! And if people buy pets and bring them in to San Francisco they should have to pay a tax that goes to the shelters. Millions of dogs and cats are dying a year in California. It is ridiculous to buy one while another one dies.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  181. Randy from San Diego

    To clarify: this is about raising awareness and clearing out those shelters. My daughter is moving up the ranks from G-pig (which we adopted from the Humane Society) to Chihuahua (after passing the tests). There is a whole organization dedicated to placing all the discarded Chihuahuas since the glut after the Taco Bell commercials.
    I just hope we don't come home with too many!?!
    PS-my son prefers his cactus collection...he's no dummy!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:55 pm |
  182. jean2009

    Many years ago I worked in a pet department. Some people will buy pets when they haven't a clue about how to care for them.

    I am definitely against the importation and sell of exotic pets. When the snake gets to big to care for, sort of scary now, and the newness has worn off...they take it out and dump it so someone can come home from work and find a 16 ft python laying across their drive.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:55 pm |
  183. Buji

    Great idea San Fransisco! Especially if the ban also includes the sale dead/slaughtered animals!! Hmmm, the fish exception seems a bit fishy to me...

    July 9, 2010 at 6:56 pm |
  184. Patrizia Mocchi

    I believe it is a wonderful idea; this would eliminate those terrible puppy mills and also would save the lives of many animals that are killed at shelters and need desperately homes. It is my personal view that animals should not be used as money making objects, they are on this earth the same way we are and deserved to live their lives free. We are all Mother Nature's children and as such I feel humans should not use animals for their personal purposes, we are no better than other creatures, we are just different.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:57 pm |
  185. Cole

    Great idea, that way internet sales of animals will boom. People aren't going to go to a shelter when they want a poodle or any other pure breed and they will do whatever it is they need to do in order to get the animal they want. The law is pointless.

    July 9, 2010 at 6:57 pm |
  186. Brian

    No matter how hard you try it is not possible to legislate morality!!

    July 9, 2010 at 6:58 pm |