APHIS: Animal Welfare: Retail Pet Stores and Licensing Exemptions http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=APHIS-2011-0003-15373
Oct.11/2013- I will update the page as new information is release, new understanding and clarity is made.
Beginning November 18, 2013, I will be joining a very large number of breeders across the U.S. in no longer shipping pets sight unseen. Due to a change in Department of Agriculture regulations for pet breeders that the USDA itself has interpreted in contradictory ways, it is impossible for most persons who sell pets to know whether it is legal to ship a pet that the buyer has not seen in person. Violations of this rule carry severe penalties. For our safety, ALL sales must take place face to face. (However, oddly enough, there is still a huge loophole: this means we can even meet ANYWHERE: even on a dirt road, a truck-stop, on the side of a road, in a ditch and at my friend's residence, and it will 'satisfy' this ridiculous face to face stipulation.
***It does not require the buyer to enter the facility, or view the facility the cats are raised in. Which of course SHOULD be the point of face to face transactions. It only requires the buyer to view the ANIMAL in person. Which you would do when it deplanes at it's destination.
This ruling is going to seriously curtail the choice of those wishing to buy the pet of their choice unless you are willing to travel to your breeder of choice regardless of distance. As written this will also affect service animals being made available to those in need.
While we do understand the need to stop those who don't properly care for their animals, and who knowingly sell sick kittens and puppies, we already have existing state and federal laws for those issues. This new rule just hinders the BUYER and his/her choices.
If you would like to help us fight this bad choice of regulation policy, please contact me or your breeder of choice to see what you can do to help. It is YOUR right to be able to buy a cat or kitten from whoever you choose and to pick it up personally or have your cat or kitten shipped to you or to meet your breeder at a mutually agreed upon place to save you travel and expense. However, you only have that right if it remains OUR right to offer those choices.
Dan & Marian Goepfert
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