LA councilman wants to ban sale of puppy mill pets

VAN NUYS, Calif.

It's something there never seems to be a shortage of - dogs and cats and other animals in need of a good home.

This is a problem local leaders are trying to tackle by going after the suppliers and pet stores where a lot of these animals come from.

"We don't want to be part of the problem. We want to be part of the solution. We want to make it more difficult to sell puppy mill animals and easier to adopt our wonderful animals out of the shelters," said Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Koretz.

Koretz is proposing a measure that targets the pet stores that buy from puppy mills. It would study the feasibility of making it illegal for stores to sell animals from puppy mills.

Actress Maggie Q is lending her support to the proposed measure.

"It should be a no brainer. These dogs are so ill," Q said. "I don't understand purchasing a life, I just don't. that doesn't make any sense to me."

Not only does the councilman want the pets stores to stop getting their animals from puppy mills, he is also hoping that the stores will help find homes for shelter animals.

Koretz is even considering giving pet stores an incentive to help.

"We hope that we can place many of them in the pet stores to replace the puppy mill animals, and we'll look at whether there is some financial incentives for them," said Koretz.

Koretz's proposal would also create a rating system for pet stores, similar to the system that rates restaurants in Southern California.

Area pet stores would be rated based upon the quality of care for the animals - whether they have enough food, water and space to roam around.

Sadly, the proposal probably won't help with the large number of pit bulls and Chihuahuas in shelters.

"We see a bunch of them being brought into the shelter either dumped as litters or brought in when they couldn't find homes for them when they get older," said Jan Selder with the Los Angeles City Animal Control.

Still, if pet stores are turned into allies in this fight against puppy mills, it could have an impact.

Though Koretz's initiative is aimed at just studying the issue, advocates eventually hope to have some concrete laws on the books in the city of Los Angeles.

Copyright © 2019 KABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.