Local

Algonquin to vote on banning pet mills at meeting Tuesday

The village of Algonquin will vote on whether to approve a preemptive ordinance banning the sale of dogs, cats, rabbits or other pets from commercial breeding centers, also known as “mills” at its meeting Tuesday.

Village manager Tim Schloneger said there are no establishments in Algonquin that would currently be affected by this.

The pet stores in the village mostly sell pet food, brushes, shampoo and other supplies, he said. “But by having it on the books, we’re preventing future establishments from setting up shop in Algonquin,” Schloneger said.

If a business that did sell pets from commercial breeders did want to open in Algonquin, they would be told it is prohibited.

Algonquin resident Linda Daly said she supported the ordinance at a recent Committee of the Whole Meeting that she is in support of the ordinance, as she has seen first hand the problems puppy mills can cause.

After buying a golden retriever from a high end puppy mill type of pet shop, she said, she found out nine months later that her new dog needed two hip replacements.

“We ended up actually remortgaging our house so we could pay $8,000 to have that one year old puppy get two new hip replacements,” Daly said.

Daly said she wants to make sure the village stays the “the ethical community that it is” and doesn’t get fooled in the future by businesses that want to come in and put in pet mills with a “gorgeous, elaborate” set up.

Another Algonquin resident, Alice Thomas, said after getting her dog from a puppy mill, she noticed the dog had behavioral issues that may have been cause from a lack of proper socialization at an early age.

Thomas’ dog is easily startled by sounds, or sudden movements, and also fears new people coming into the home. Other common behavioral issues puppies may experience from being brought up in mills include fear, aggression, anxiety, extreme shyness, noise phobias, separation, anxiety and trainability issues, Thomas said.

The exact language of the ordinance allows pet shop operators to sell dogs, cats or rabbits only if they obtain the pet from a duly incorporated humane society, animal welfare society or other nonprofit organization whose purpose is to provide for and promote the welfare, protection and humane treatment of animals; an animal rescue organization; or a state, county or municipal animal control facility/shelter. Under this ordinance, pet shop owners would also not be allowed to sell a dog, cat or rabbit younger than eight weeks old.

All the members of Algonquin’s Committee of the Whole, which is made up of village board members, approved moving the ordinance forward to be voted on at the board’s next meeting at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Ganek Municipal Center.

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