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Pet shop owner, EP council spar over puppy sales

June 10, 2014

EAST PROVIDENCE – Perfect Pets owner Scott Bergantino is convinced that had members of the East Providence City Council visited his The Perfect Puppy store on Wampanoag Trail, they would have thought twice about passing an ordinance that makes it illegal for any commercial business to sell dogs or cats in the city.

But they didn’t. The ordinance was passed. And Bergantino is in the legal fight of his life.

The ordinance, passed by a unanimous vote of the council on June 3, makes it illegal for any commercial business to sell dogs or cats in the city. Two days later, Bergantino, owner of Scituate-based Perfect Pets, which operates The Perfect Puppy store at 1235 Wampanoag Trail, obtained a temporary restraining order to keep the city from enforcing the ordinance, saying the measure is preempted by state law and is unconstitutional. He is being represented by attorney Lesley Rich, who called the new ordinance “misguided and flawed.”

According to the ordinance, it is unlawful for any person to “display, offer for sale, deliver, barter, auction, give away, transfer or sell any live dog or cat in any pet store, retail business or other commercial establishment located in the City of East Providence.”

Full story appears on page A1 of Wednesday's Times.

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