Roadside pet sales banned in El Paso County

Looking to give a furry friend to someone this holiday season? Don’t look to buy a pet from sellers on the side of the road.

El Paso County commissioners voted to ban roadside sales of animals. The Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region has been lobbying for some time for the county-wide ban. The ban is already in effect in Colorado Springs.

This ban, approved Nov. 20, puts an end to distributors selling or giving animals away on public sidewalks and mall parking lots, and in front of stores and flea markets.  These types of sales only add to an already serious pet overpopulation problem in our community, the Humane Society said.

“This much-needed ordinance is a great stride toward our mission of encouraging responsible ownership and the humane treatment of animals in El Paso County,” said Jan McHugh-Smith, HSPPR president and CEO. “Banning the roadside display and sale of animals will stop puppy millers and irresponsible breeders from selling or giving animals away. We’ve seen incidents in which animals are too young, are not properly vaccinated, and are unhealthy.”

The problem, McHugh-Smith said, is that there is no way to track the roadside seller or distributor involved in these transactions, which means no recourse for buyers.

McHugh-Smith said the ban does not take away a citizen’s right to own animals or sell them in private venues nor does it prevent adoption events by nonprofit animal rescues or shelters.