August 28, 2019
Last Friday, several pet stores collectively filed a lawsuit against the state of Maryland, claiming a recent animal welfare law will violate their Constitutional rights. Beginning January 1, 2020, all pet stores in Maryland must source their animals from local animal shelters and animal welfare organizations, rather than commercial breeders and puppy mills. This ban on puppy mill sales is being implemented in response to the inhumane, cruel, and unsanitary conditions these commercial facilities are infamous for perpetuating.
Maryland lawmakers decided last year that the best way to stop the cruel nature of commercial breeding is by banning the sale of the animals they produce, thus forcing the industry to shut down or move elsewhere. California and Maine have recently taken similar measures to crack down on the puppy mill problem. To understand more about the horrible conditions that dogs and cats endure in commercial breeding facilities, please click here.
The lawsuit cites the U.S. Constitution’s commerce and equal protections clauses as well as other animal welfare laws that it claims the ban violates. However, the pet store owners’ greatest concern of course is not the welfare of the animals that they profit off of, but that the ban will put the stores out of business.
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