As reported in The Globe and Mail, the municipal council in Richmond, British Columbia has voted to ban puppy sales at pet stores. Motivating the bylaw was a feeling that the retail sale of puppies was fuelling sales by puppy mills as well as impulse purchases that eventually led to buyer’s remorse.
Impulse purchases and buyer’s remorse? Seriously. This is why we don’t give credit cards to eight year-olds. If parents (or lonely adults) are being bamboozled en masse into buying puppies as they stroll past pet store windows at the mall — as if they were mindlessly picking up a pack of gum at the checkout aisle — we’d like to know about it. While we imagine there is no shortage of children who walk past these displays and instantly decide they must have a puppy (please, please, please, I’ll be really good I promise and feed it and walk it always, promise!), common sense suggests that parents on the receiving end can usually postpone any decision-making with a “Let me think about it”, “Ask your mom/dad”, or a “Let’s see how well you behave for the next week/month/year.” And if it’s really the case that kids are breaking down into screaming fits and refusing to leave the store without a puppy, we suspect a bylaw of this ilk will hardly make a dent in improving the lives of said kids’ lucky parents. (more…)