Pet Ownership Under Attack in Massachusetts and California

22 Sep, 2017

via the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC)

A PIJAC Issue Update: 9/21/17

A PIJAC Issue Update: 9/21/17

Our industry is being targeted by activists like never before!

Animal rights groups have targeted all aspects of the trade and are intent on eliminating pet ownership in Massachusetts. In the last year, they have eliminated the only pet store in Boston and banned the retail sale of ANY companion animals except fish in Cambridge.

There are several bills being considered for state-level adoption by the Massachusetts legislature right now. Some come right out and call for a ban, while others call their efforts “regulation” but make the compliance standards unachievable. We have defeated these efforts in the past, but this year success will be substantially more difficult.

The good news is that we have a bill that we can support. It sets tough but achievable standards for pet stores that sell puppies or kittens, and mandates that the authority for regulating them is maintained at the state level.

If you rely on the availability of companion animals for your job, we need you and your business to get involved. If you own a pet store, run a pet store, work in a pet store, do business with a pet store, sell or deliver pet products, or even provide pets to stores, then we need your help. We need you to join our coalition by writing letters, sending emails, providing testimony, reaching out to the press, and contributing funds.

The activists in Massachusetts have made no secret of the fact that they are intent on ending people’s access to companion animals – ALL ANIMALS (hamsters, guinea pigs, mice, etc., and ALL birds and reptiles) – and if people don’t own the pets, they don’t buy pet-related products.

Email to get involved and visit: to join PIJAC and/or contribute to the Legislative Defense Fund.

If we don’t work together now, the pet trade in Massachusetts will look very different very soon.



The Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC) is urging California Governor Jerry Brown to veto Assembly Bill 485. AB 485 is a statewide ban on the sale of non-rescue, non-shelter dogs, cats, and rabbits from pet stores that passed the state Senate on Tuesday and was approved by the Assembly today.

A late amendment to the bill exempts pet dealers from 17 of 21 consumer and pet protections that apply to pet store cat and dog purchases. According to PIJAC President Mike Bober, “This amendment codifies what pet professionals across California and the country have been saying since AB 485 was introduced: Pet owners and pet lovers lose out.”

The affected regulations are in Article 2 of the California Health and Safety Code, Division 105, Part 6, Chapter 5. They were established by the Lockyer-Polanco-Farr Pet Purchase Protection Act, which is regarded as one of the nation’s strongest consumer and pet safeguards. AB 485 exempts pet stores from consumer information requirements, warranty provisions, fines for violators, and other important regulations.

PIJAC summarized the full list of exemptions on Tuesday morning. According to Bober, the changes “should concern all advocates for animal welfare.”

“Assembly Bill 485 reverses California’s tradition of leading the nation in pet and consumer protections,” said Bober. “Governor Brown, please veto this bill for the sake of your constituents, both four-legged and two-legged.”

National and state advocates for companion animals have also opposed AB 485 because there is no requirement for rescues and shelters to work with pet stores to provide animals for sale. Pet professionals say AB 485 risks jobs and denies Californians their choice of pet.



Since 1970, the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC) has protected pets, pet owners and the pet industry – promoting responsible pet ownership and animal welfare, fostering environmental stewardship, and ensuring the availability of pets. PIJAC members include retailers, companion animal suppliers, manufacturers, wholesale distributors, manufacturers’ representatives, pet hobbyists, and other trade organizations.

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Reef to Rainforest Media, LLC is the publisher of award-winning magazines and books in the fields of aquarium keeping, aquatics, and marine science. It is the English-language publisher of CORAL Magazine and is based in Shelburne, Vermont, USA.

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