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Madison city leaders working to help rescue dogs and cats

Updated: Dec. 29, 2020 at 10:52 PM CST
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Leaders in Madison are making sure rescue animals end up in safe and loving homes by passing an ordinance to protect not only the animals themselves, but also future animal owners.

Effective January 1st, dogs and cats sold in retail stores in the city of Madison can only be sourced from an animal rescue or shelter. Ordinance sponsor, Councilwoman Maura Wroblewski said this will not only protect our four legged friends, but also residents of the city from getting a pet with health issues.

“They’ve done the background information, they’ve given them the shots,” Councilwoman Wroblewski said. “They make sure they don’t have heartworm if they are a dog, that they don’t have feline leukemia if they are a cat. Then spay and neuter them.”

Melissa McDaniel with Feline Fanciers Cat Rescue said this could lead to more stray dogs and cats getting into loving homes.

“There’s many animals within this general area that really need homes and I hope something like this will encourage people to go to their local stores and find these different rescues. They will find the perfect animal for them,” McDaniel said.

At the Pet Supplies Plus in Madison, management, employees, and owners said they know firsthand what it’s like to be loved by a rescue animal after adopting one of their own.

The store generally holds rescue adoption days, and even hosts rescue cats looking for permanent homes, but two years ago a cat named Murphy found his home in that very store.

“He came in as an adoptable cat and he was an older cat.” Manager Chris Barnes said. “He didn’t get a lot of looks, so as a leadership team we adopted him together and it’s been wonderful. He gets along with all the humans.”

Owner of the pet store Bobby Bellenfant said, nowadays, Murphy spends his time getting pet from customers who come into the store.

“He is a great example of how a rescue cat can be just as beneficial to any family as any other cat,” Bellenfant said.

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