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Irvine Bans Retail Sales of Dogs and Cats

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If you were planning to swing by Irvine and buy a new puppy, you may need to rethink your trajectory: the Irvine City Council just voted to ban the sale of dogs and cats in retail stores.

The vote happened last night, and also includes a ban on rodeos and circuses that feature exotic animals, according to CBS News.

The pet store part of the new regulation will only affect one retailer, notes the OC Weekly, as there is only one pet store in Irvine -- Russo's Pet Experience. The Weekly adds that the effort to try to shut down retail purveryors of dogs and cats comes as part of a larger effort to reduce the number of animals bought from puppy mills, and to encourage responsible breeding and pet adoption.

But the sole councilmember who opposed the bill suggested that the ban was essentially a solution in need of a problem:

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Jeff Lalloway...argued the city was creating a problem that did not exist, as there is only one pet store in the city, and it will be out of business next year. Lalloway also noted there are no mass-breeding facilities, no rodeos and no circuses with exotic animals operating in Irvine.

Still, the ban was supported by about 50 attendees at the council's meeting, as well as Orange County People for Animals and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.