A Maine lawmaker is pushing for a bill that would ban puppies and kittens from being available for purchase in pet stores in Maine, according to the Press Herald.

As recently as a couple decades ago, classic pet stores were commonplace in Maine, but since then people have tended to get their pets from shelters, rescues, or directly from local breeders. As a result, the bill wouldn't cause a major change in Maine but would essentially reinforce the culture change that has already caught on among pet owners.

The Press Herald reports that a 2017 survey taken by the American Pet Products Association found that only 4 percent of dog owners in the U.S. got their dog from a pet store. Conversely, 44 percent of dogs were bought from shelters and rescues while breeders provided another 25 percent. Another 25 percent came from friends or family.

Kittens and puppies.

Only 82 pet shop remain in Maine, and while many pet stores practice responsible means of acquiring their dogs and cats for sale, the bill is targeted at stores that support puppy mills and irresponsible breeders.

“It’s an effort to reduce overpopulation of pets and to curb puppy mills,” the bill's sponsor, Senator Ben Chipman, said Monday.

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