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Doylestown Borough outlaws retail sale of puppy mill animals


Doylestown Borough Council unanimously approved an ordinance that bans the retail sales of puppies and kittens in the community. The law does not apply to pet stores selling animals coming from a “reputable rescue.”

Intended to support efforts to end puppy and kitten mills across the region, the recently adopted law prohibits a store that would sell such animals from opening in Doylestown. The sale of animals from a “reputable rescue” is permitted, said borough manager John Davis.

“This sends a strong message that Doylestown Borough, along with Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Allentown, will not tolerate puppy mills and kitten mills selling their animals in the borough,” said Mark Feingold, a resident who brought the issue to the attention of councilman Joe Frederick.

Puppy mills, Feingold told the council, have been “a scourge in Pennsylvania for many years. These inhuman commercial breeding facilities often grossly mistreat their breeding animals.”

One of the primary ways puppy mills reach consumers is through pet stores, said Feingold. Often, pet owners may be unaware of where the animals came from and unaware of the health and behavioral problems they can bring due to the conditions at the so-called mills, he added.

“The adorable puppies that people see in pet store windows have had to endure harsh and brutal conditions before being sent to the stores,” Feingold said. “The same concerns apply to kittens, which have been bred at similarly unscrupulous commercial breeding facilities.”

Implementing bans at the municipal level brings a greater chance of a statewide ban, a goal Feingold supports. Frederick said he’s been contacted by some surrounding communities to learn more about the ordinance.

No current businesses are impacted by the ordinance, said Davis. The cats sold at Pet Supplies Plus in the Doylestown Shopping Center come from a “reputable rescue,” he noted, in an email.

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