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On Tuesday, September 19, 2023, at 5:00pm, the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Council Public Safety Committee will meet via videoconference to consider a proposed animal ordinance that, among other provisions, seeks to:

  • Define “retail pet store” as a commercial establishment that sells or offers for sale animals on its premises at retail and notwithstanding what type of license the establishment holds or whether the establishment is licensed. This definition should be amended to specifically exclude Class A, B, and C kennels and catteries as defined under Louisville/Jefferson County law.
  • Gut consumer protections for persons who purchase or adopt a puppy, dog, cat, kitten, or ferret. The American Kennel Club (AKC) supports reasonable laws and regulations intended to protect the pet-buying public in obtaining a sound dog of the breed represented.
  • Prohibit the sales of dogs and cats in retail pet stores. AKC supports freedom of choice in selecting a pet and promotes efforts to ensure that people are educated, understand the demands of responsible ownership and have access to a pet that is right for them. AKC opposes any measure that restricts choice by compelling people and/or retailers to obtain pets solely from shelter or rescue distributors.
  • Exclude from the definition of “animal rescue organization” volunteer dog rescue groups affiliated with and/or supported by certain AKC clubs and dog breeders.
  • Change the definition of “dog” to include dogs of all ages. The purpose of this redefinition is unclear, particularly considering that current law references “dogs and puppies” when specification is necessary.
  • The proposed ordinance contains a positive provision that would prohibit the sales of dog and cats on streets, public rights-of-way, flea markets, parking lots, etc., with exclusions for state/county fairs, 4-H programs, and similar exhibitions and educational programs.

What You Can Do:

Residents are urged to contact Public Safety Committee members ahead of the meeting to state their concerns, ask that they do not advance the proposed animal ordinance as currently drafted, and amend problematic definitions. Click here for an online message form and email address information.

Committee Members:

Chair Brent Ackerson (D-26), (502) 574-1126

Vice Chair Scott Reed (R-16), (502) 574-1116

Tammy Hawkins (D-1), (502) 574-1101

Kumar Rashad (D-3), (502) 574-1103

Andrew Owen (D-9), (502) 574-1109

Dan Seum, Jr. (R-13), (502) 574-1113

Jeff Hudson (R-23), (502) 574-1123

Madonna Flood (D-24), (502) 547-1124


Talking Points: Consumer Protection Laws Protect the Public and Animals
Video: Your Right to Choose a Pet
Issue Analysis: Bans on Retail Pet Sales Fail to Protect Pets, Undermine Responsible Pet Choice
Talking Points: Retail Bans Undermine Consumer Choice

For more about retail pet sales, visit AKC’s key issue page on Pet Choice.

Contact the American Kennel Club’s Government Relations Department at for more information.