Letters to the Editor

Take action to stop puppy mill operations

The Cedar Rapids City Council should take a leadership role in the state and ban the sale of puppy mill dogs from pet stores. Communities such as St. Paul, Atlanta, and Salt Lake City recently passed (or are considering) such ordinances, joining hundreds of cities around the country in doing so.

As this is Iowa’s second- largest city, our council has an opportunity to steer the conversation across Iowa.

Iowa is home to around 300 large-scale commercial dog breeders. Some have 50 breeder pairs, but a few have as many as 150 breeding dogs. These facilities may be licensed by the USDA or the state of Iowa, but the recent ASPCA raid near Manly shows how low those standards are.

The Iowa Legislature likely will not act to better regulate these facilities. So Cedar Rapids and other local communities should fill the gap by prohibiting the sale of dogs from puppy mills. To be clear, such a ban would not stop anyone from buying a puppy from a reputable breeder … and it wouldn’t stop breeders from raising puppies. But it would stop the puppy mill to pet store pipeline for our city.

James Morres

Cedar Rapids

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