LA City councilmembers call for moratorium on new breeding permits

LA City councilmembers call for moratorium on new breeding permits

With the hope of stemming the overcrowding in Los Angeles animal shelters, two city council members have called for an “immediate and indefinite moratorium” on new breeders.

The motion, which Councilmembers Eunisses Hernandez and Traci Park introduced, also ordered the Department of Animal Services to compile information on the number of illegal breeding operations cited this year and study the impacts of similar bans.

“It is unacceptable for the City to continue issuing breeding permits while thousands of animals are suffering from overcrowded conditions in our animal shelters,” Hernandez said in a statement. “While many factors have contributed to this crisis, halting the issuance of breeding permits is an immediate step the City can take to reduce the strain on the system.”

So far this year, L.A. Animal Services has issued over 1,100 breeding permits and believes that “many more” will be granted by the end of 2023, according to the motion. 

The South Los Angeles Animal Services Center houses the most animals with 497 living in the facility. 

Jason Armond / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Crates filled with cats, dogs and other animals have overflowed into shelters’ hallways, forcing caretakers at the city’s six animal shelters to choose between providing substandard care to the pets or leaving them in neglectful or abusive homes, according to General Manager Staycee Dains.

“Animals are suffering in our shelters, and so are those who care for them,” Dains, who took over Animal Services two months ago said last week. “We keep animals in crates in hallways for days, weeks, or months at a time. Staff and volunteers are injured by animals subject to fear, anxiety, and stress. Our caregivers know that the animals receive substandard care, which harms their mental well-being. We cannot allow the suffering to continue.”  

While understanding that the crisis must be solved with a multi-pronged approach, Hernandez and Park hope that the moratorium could, at least, stem the overcrowding. 

“We must act now to help alleviate the burden on our overflowing animal shelters,” said Councilwoman Traci Park. “While it’s not the only solution, every effort counts in creating relief at our shelters and ensuring every animal finds a home.”

Hernandez also scheduled a meeting to address the situation at the city’s shelters on Sept. 27. 

In the meantime, Animal Services has asked residents to help by adopting or fostering animals, all of which have been vaccinated, microchipped, spayed/neutered and given flea treatments.  

If you want to adopt an animal from L.A. Animal Services, click here for more information.

LA City councilmembers call for moratorium on new breeding permits

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