Manasquan Revising Proposed Pet Sale Ordinance
Borough Council ensuring home breeders, kennels are exempt from law
A proposed ordinance that would have banned the sale of dogs and cats in Manasquan pet shops was defeated Monday after Borough Council members decided certain language in the draft might have created unintended consequences for private breeders.
Councilman Joe Bossone during the governing body's work session said he wanted to redraft the proposed ordinance, which was up for final vote Monday, and remove any language that would have unintentionally banned dog and cat breeding in Manasquan homes and kennels.
"The original intent of this ordinance was not to affect or target individual households or a kennel that may breed dogs, (but) the way it's worded may just do that," Bossone said.
The council voted 5-0 to defeat the proposal and plans to reintroduce the new draft at its Sept. 4 meeting.
Borough Attorney Mark Kittrick will remove any reference to kennels and kennel owners from the original draft, but no other changes will be made, officials said.
Citing research from the Humane Society of the United States, the draft ordinance (2120-12) says that many licensed breeders in fact breed dogs or cats "in relatively inhumane conditions."
Commonly referred to as "puppy mills" and "kitten factories," such breeders have been known by authorities to over-breed, inbreed, lack standard veterinary care, provide poor-quality food and shelter, lack human socialization, and over-crowd cages, the draft says.
It adds that dogs bred in so-called puppy mills are more likely to have behavorial and/or health problems.
"[T]he Borough Council believes that a community that promotes animal welfare will be a healthier community," the draft says.
Violators of the proposed ordinance would face either fines of up to $2000, 90 days in jail, community service, or a combination of the three, the draft says.
The governing body also believes the proposed ban would encourage more pet adoptions from shelters, "thereby saving animals' lives and reducing the cost to the public sheltering of animals," the draft says.