Old Uncle Mayor de Blasio has made animal rights a part of his platform since his campaign promises (now made good) to introduce legislation to ban horse-drawn carriages in New York City. A group of City Council members, perhaps relying on this position to help push through their proposal, has voted in favor of a law that would ban pet stores in the five boroughs from selling pet rabbits. Why? Well rabbits, though adorable and cartoonish, are pretty good at producing more rabbits, which is contributing to the overcrowding of city shelters. The number of unwanted rabbits hosted by Animal Care and Control actually doubled in the past year.
“Rabbits reproduce like–rabbits,” said Council Member Elizabeth Crowley at a press conference, per the New York Post. “There’s no space in the shelter system right now for rabbits.”
That doesn’t mean that all rabbits are about to be evicted from New York City (and presumably you can still adopt one of the critters from the shelter system). Bunnies can still be kept as pets, just not sold in stores. Chicago, San Francisco, and Los Angeles already have a similar rabbit law. Other measures that the council passed, now on their way to the De Blasio desk ™, include a regulation requiring pet stores to spay or neuter dogs and cats before sale and a ban on the purchase of critters from “puppy mills.”
But good news if you’re just bent on owning a rodent-like creature: the Council is also considering lifting a ban on ferrets. So, maybe now that there’s a cat cafe, next up can be a ferret bar?