FLORENCE Ala. — Florence Mayor Steve Holt and the city council approved an ordinance that would prevent “puppy mills” from operating within the city limits.
Director of Florence-Lauderdale Animal Services Cheryl Jones explained that the term “puppy mill” is used to describe breeding operations that operate below standard. “You’ll see the mass breeding operations where the animals aren’t vetted, where the parents live in cages, never get outside, typically everything bad about breeding is in puppy mills,” said Jones.
Under this new ordinance, dogs and cats can only be adopted from a shelter or rescue organization or purchased through a reputable breeder, like Candace Garner Case who is an attorney and owner of Doodles by Willow’s Farm in Lauderdale County.
“When they buy from a breeder, like myself, where the puppies live in a home environment and they are treated like pets and part of the family, then they are purchasing an animal that is typically going to have a healthier physical lifespan, as well as the behavioral aspects of the dog, are usually a lot better,” said Case.
The ordinance prevents pet stores from selling dogs and cats as well unless they come from those trusted sources. All three of the pet stores in Florence get their animals from either Florence-Lauderdale Animal Services or a rescue organization.