Texas House passes bill targeting puppy mills, local shelters react

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HARLINGEN, Texas (KVEO) — The Texas House has passed a bill targeting puppy mills. KVEO reaches out to animal shelters in the Rio Grande Valley to get their take o the news.

House Bill 1818 would require pet store owners to get dogs or cats they sell from animal shelters, animal control agencies, rescue organizations or licensed breeders. 

“Breeders from outside states being able to bring animals in here from puppy mills and other places that the health is already compromised we already have enough challenges in our community with overpopulation,” said Donna Casamento, the Executive Director at Palm Valley Animal Society.

Casamento was overwhelmed with joy to hear the bill passed in the house. While HB 1818 would still allow licensed breeders, shelters continue to encourage adoption. 

“We already have so many homeless pets that other pets are being bred out there, so I would still suggest that people adopt a pet and not shop for one,” said Luis Quintanilla, Executive Director for the Humane Society of Harlingen.

Quintanilla is hopeful this will bring accountability from pet stores and make sure they are adhering to humane models. 

“Where does this pet come from? Was this an animal that was being bred for the purpose of being sold like property or was this an animal that was rescued because it needed a home?” said Quintanilla.

Casamento and Quintanilla agree this is a great way to get more local pet stores to partner with shelters in hopes of saving more animals. 

HB 1818 is now moving to the Texas Senate for consideration.

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