Search Menu

On Wednesday, March 27, 2024, the Vermont House Committee on Agriculture, Food Resiliency, and Forestry will hear testimony on HB 567, which seeks to restrict retail pet sales by:

  • Requiring the one current Vermont pet store to maintain ownership in order to continue selling dogs and cats, and cap sales at the same number they sold in 2023; and
  • Limiting future VT “retail pet stores” to only sourcing dogs and cats from animal rescues and shelters.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) opposes these changes. State licensed pet shops are regulated entities that can be readily inspected and are required to provide consumer protections. Organizations importing animals into Vermont for re-homing are not currently licensed or regulated, and Vermont’s consumer protection laws do not cover dogs purchased/adopted from rescues and shelters. Additionally, shelters and rescues may not always have the best choices for every family that wants a pet, including dogs that will fit in with a family’s lifestyle. More details on how consumer protection laws protect the public and animals are here.

WHAT YOU CAN DO:  Vermont Residents and responsible breeders and owners are strongly encouraged to email the House Agriculture, Food Resiliency, and Forestry Committee before March 27. In the subject line, insert “HB 567 opposition”. Be sure to identify your town.

Consider including the following talking points:

  • By imposing one pet shop business model, HB 567 falsely claims to stop out of state “puppy mills”.
  • Vermont pet purchasers should continue to be allowed to choose from which responsible source they obtain a pet, which may include breeders, shelters, rescues, and pet stores.
  • Vermont pet purchasers should remain protected by the state’s consumer protection laws.
  • Why would lawmakers substitute a Vermont regulated source of pets for an unregulated one?
  • HB 567 promotes getting a dog with unknown background, temperament, and health history.

COMMITTEE CONTACT INFORMATION: You may send individual emails to each committee member, or one email addressed to all committee members at the emails listed below.

Rep. David Durfee, Chair –

Rep. Heather Surprenant, Vice Chair –

Rep. Rodney Graham, Ranking Member –

Rep. Esme Cole –

Rep. Josie Leavitt –

Rep. Jed Lipsky –

Rep. Henry Pearl, Clerk –

Rep. John O’Brien –

Rep. Mike Rice –

Rep. David Templeman –

For more information on these or other legislative issues in Vermont, contact AKC’s Government Relations Department at 919-816-3720 or