On April 5, South Salt Lake Animal Services Control Officer Zach Allen pets a dog at the shelter. The KSL Classifieds team is working to improve their pet section with changes to better protect future furry friends through initiatives that will crack down on irresponsible breeders and sellers. (Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)
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SALT LAKE CITY – KSL Classifieds is a useful tool for people looking to sell items they no longer use or need, as well as those looking to mark something they have in mind. seen. The game changes, however, when pets are sold.
Instead of an old sofa or a used vehicle, they are real living, breathing creatures.
The KSL Classifieds team said they realized there was substantial room for improvement and they are doing so by making changes to their pet section to better protect future furry friends through initiatives that will crack down on irresponsible breeders and sellers.
“The traditional KSL Classifieds model encouraged backyard breeding and allowed puppy racers (people who import dogs from puppy mills in other states to sell them for profit in Utah) to operate without break,” said Guinnevere Shuster, associate director of marketing and communications for the Utah Humane Society. . “We receive dozens of complaints each month about people being scammed by fake listings or selling very sick pets requiring thousands of dollars in veterinary care. Because the listings have been anonymized, there has been no no recourse for human or animal victims in these situations.”
One of the biggest changes that KSL Classifieds will make is attaching a $15 entry fee to all dog lists starting in late 2022. By attaching the fee to all dog lists, KSL Classifieds encourages the user who creates the list to have a more direct interest. in animal welfare and where it ultimately ends up.
The charges apply specifically to dogs, as this is where KSL Classifieds has seen the most activity in the pets section and, therefore, the most suspicious activity.
Additionally, the registration fee will reduce instances of repetitive or irrelevant registrations to help KSL Classifieds users find dogs efficiently and, in turn, help more dogs find safe and loving homes.
“Charging for pet listings and setting a maximum price for a pet will hopefully help filter out some of the really bad actors who are using KSL Classifieds to circumvent regulations and defraud people seeking to add a pet to their family,” Shuster said.
Listing fee payments can be made by credit card when creating a listing. As with other listings, a dog listing will have a set expiration date. Sellers will need to create a new listing if they wish to keep their dog visible on KSL Classifieds after the listing’s expiration date, in which case they will pay a new fee of $15.
In embarking on an overhaul of the pets section, KSL Classifieds enlisted the help and expertise of those who fight for animal welfare every day: The Utah Humane Society and Best Friends Animal Society.
About 355,000 animals were killed in shelters in 2021, an increase from the number killed in 2020, according to Best Friends Animal Society.
“As long as healthy, treatable pets lose their lives simply because they don’t have a safe place to call home, we encourage anyone looking to get a pet to adopt from a shelter or rescue group,” said Elizabeth Oreck, National Director. of puppy mill initiatives for Best Friends Animal Society.
“We appreciate the changes KSL Classifieds has made to their site and applaud their commitment to making their pet classifieds safer and more responsible to animals and consumers, to supporting the adoption of homeless animals, and to providing educational resources so anyone looking to get a pet can make the most informed decision possible,” Oreck said.
Beyond just asking animal welfare groups for help, KSL Classifieds will donate a portion of each dog registration fee to local shelters and animal rights groups, such as Best Friends Animal Society and Utah Humane Society.
“This was eye-opening as we worked with thought leaders on changes to make our pet section safer for pets, buyers and sellers on our platform. I became passionate about educating our audience on these issues and I sincerely hope that we can have a positive impact on the pet community with our new site and policy changes,” said Tiffany Rhodes, Senior Marketing Manager for KSL Classifieds.
For more resources and information about the work KSL Classifieds is doing to improve animal welfare, click here.