Nanaimo SPCA’s recommended pet sale ban will be brought to council

Letters on ban of cats and dogs from retail stores on Nanaimo council agenda for Monday

The Stewardship Centre for British Columbia and Nature Canada have joined the Nanaimo SPCA in a call to ban the sale of puppies and kittens at pet shops as the issue makes its way to the council chambers this week.

The Nanaimo SPCA recommends a ban of puppies, kittens and rabbits and welfare standards for all animals in pet stores, kennels, animal daycares and groomers, although it also offers an option of only adopting its bylaw suggestions for animal care.

The Stewardship Centre for B.C. and Nature Canada support a ban, specifically of cats and dogs, saying in a letter to mayor and council that most pet stores in Canada have signed on to a pet adoption location program offered by their local humane society or SPCA and it encourages Nanaimo pet stores to do the same. There is a “significant” overpopulation of cat, the letter reads, adding a policy plank is to encourage the public to adopt, not shop.

The letter, along with correspondence from the SPCA, is on the agenda for the Nanaimo council meeting Monday (Aug. 14) at the Shaw Auditorium.

Barry Bender, owner of Paws n Jaws, is hoping for the second option by the SPCA, allowing pet sales with rules and regulations.

“If I am not allowed to sell puppies anymore, I think that I’m out of business, because it’s an important part of our business that I don’t think I could continue carrying on without the sales,” he said.

Bender, who will be at the council meeting Monday, started a petition this week on allowing the store to continue to offer puppies for sale and said he had 229 signatures as of Friday. The petition also says the SPCA is falsely accusing the store of purchasing puppies from puppy mills and the store only gets puppies from qualified, responsible breeders and that on Aug. 14, council is considering a ban on puppy sales at their store, according to Bender.