SANTA MARIA, Calif. - California is leading the way with a new law that would help our four-legged friends. Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 485, banning the sale of dogs, cats and rabbits from mills.
California is the first state to pass tougher laws on pet stores.
"With this passing, it means pet stores can only go through local rescues or 501-C3 rescues and not backward breeders or commercial breeders,” said Cristine Collier, with "No More Pet Store Puppies 805."
The new law requires pet stores to sell dogs, cats, and rabbits that only come from shelters or rescue groups.
Pet stores that don’t comply could face a $500 fine.
"It will cut down on puppy mills and not knowing where the animals come from...its history, their parents,” said Genete Bowen, a support of the law.
Bowen has four Dachshunds. Two came from what she says are reputable breeders. The other two are rescues and one of those rescues came from a puppy mill.
"A reputable breeder would never sell to a pet store because they want to know where their pets are going,” she said.
Bowen said the new law is a step in the right direction for four-legged friends, making sure that pets are living and being bred under humane conditions.
"I am very excited that California is leading the way,” said Jan Glick, Santa Barbara County's Animal Services Director.
The law continues to foster relationships between shelters and pets stores. Ultimately helping to eliminate overcrowding at shelters.
"It’s a great opportunity for business and animal rescues to work together to save more animal lives,” said Glick.
Glick said the Santa Maria Animal Shelter looks for opportunities to take shelter animals to pet shops for adoption.
"I don’t look at it as a negative effect for the pet stores so much as a positive effect for animals coming out of a mill situation,” said Glick.
The law is set to take effect in January 2019.