ThE Humane Pet Acquisition Ordinance

Community leaders should encourage the adoption of pets from shelters and rescue organizations, and promote education about each type of animal so families are equipped for long-term care and expenses. 

Once in effect, this ordinance will limit the following: 

  • The retail sale of cats and dogs, excluding nonprofit organizations and breeders selling directly to the public.
  • The retail sale of ferrets, rabbits, long-lived birds (such as Cockatoos, Macaws and Amazons) and large reptiles. Retail sales are defined as, offering for sale, offering for adoption, bartering, auctioning, giving away, displaying for commercial purposes or otherwise transferring any animal that is not bred on the premises.  

The problems in Michigan communities:

  • Animal Control staff hours would be better spent addressing the homeless animal problem and not spending their time continually policing chronic offenders in pet stores. 
  • The city of Warren spent over $20,000 on animal impound and veterinary care for just one pet store seizure in 2013.
  • Animals are kept in inhumane conditions in commercial and back-yard breeding facilities and in unfit conditions in pet stores.
  • Unsuspecting families are making expensive and spontaneous purchases of poorly-bred animals, resulting in expensive veterinary bills.

Take Action:

  • Sign our Petition to receive action alerts and updates. Make sure you include your city, state and provide authorization to receive notifications. 
  • Shop at Michigan Pet Friendly Pet Stores.
  • Request your County Commissioners to pass a resolution to support the ordinance.
  • Request your City Council to pass the 2017 model ordinance

Learn how to pass the ordinance in your city, township or village:

How to find a humane pet:

Michigan Shelter Reports

  • 2014-2010  
  • These reports include rabbits and ferrets, as well as intake, euthanasia and adoption statistics for cats and dogs. 

Other Cities Across the Country

Michigan Puppy Friendly Pet Stores

USDA Licensed Kennels

  • Kennel photos available on the ASPCA website. 
  • Kennel inspection reports available on the USDA website. Includes the last three years of inspections. Prior inspections available upon request through FOIA. 

Michigan Pet Store Breeders

Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 

Media Coverage

  1. Michigan Pet Stores Take Puppy Friendly Pledge
  2. The HSUS releases Five-year study of nearly2,500 puppy buyer complaints. 
  3. Law Article: “Shutting Off Sales Outlets for Commercial Mass Breeders”

The model ordinance was developed using language from other cities who have passed similar restrictions including Austin, Texas; Glendale, California; and the City of East Providence, Rhode Island.

The City of East Providence ordinance restricting the sale of dogs produced in commercial, large-scale puppy mills was upheld by the federal U.S. District Court (2015) providing an important legal precedent in the national effort to crack down on abusive mills. Key language from this ordinance was included in the Humane Pet Acquisition model ordinance: 

"It is unlawful for any person to display, offer for sale, deliver, barter, auction, give away, transfer, or sell any live dog or cat in any pet store, retail business or other commercial establishment located in the City of East Providence."

The Macomb County Corporate Council approved the final version to be used in Macomb County and other Michigan communities. This version was approved by the Macomb County Commissioners on June 11, 2015.

Resolutions Passed

  1. Macomb County Resolution