Back in 1995 it finally dawned on the government that the pet industry was the only place they forgot to suck money out of. The Department of Agriculture set up an Animal Care Division to include, among others, pet groomers, vets, boarding, pet stores, anyone who has anything to do with the selling, rescue or working with animals.
Originally the fee for pet groomer’s was $150.00 a year. With that fee they were going to inspect every grooming facility, mobile or storefront every year. The concept was under the guise of protecting the animals. They were going to insure that there was no animal abuse; deaths from human stupidity and disease could not be spread pet to pet (facility kept clean).
The fee then increased across the board with grooming facilities now paying $250.00 a year to be inspected. If you did not pass inspection the Department of Ag had the power to shut down your business.
There were two possible outcomes when the initial hearings took place. Most of us believed it was just another way for the government to sit back and collect yet even more money they had no right to have. We all wondered what took them so long to figure out that the pet industry generated billions of dollars a year. It would be a perfect venue for them to stick their money grubbing hands into it. The second that if indeed they were really going to protect the animals it would be a great thing and it would put the abusive or people who endangered pets out of business.
“In 2004-2005 the PACFA staff issued 1784 licenses, maintained compliance of the PACFA rules, issued several fines and cease and desisted a number of pet care facilities.”
There is not one person who has yet to be aware of any cease and desist orders. Nor does the Dept of Ag list any on their web site or any infractions facilities might have had to the general public. The one group of people who need to know that information. Most of us in the industry know of people who should be shut down for either injury to pets, deaths, filth, puppy mills and a host of other concerns. We in the pet industry are also aware that there are far more than 1,784 pet related business facilities in the Denver/Metro area. The number is actually close to 3,000 if you included animal shelters, which the Dept of Ag does. However, many shelters, grooming facilities, vet offices, etc., are still up and running and this might be explained by the following.
In the 11 years this has been in practice Curbside Clippers had been inspected twice. Yes, count them, that is two (2) times in all the 11 years. Many years ago when the inspector called to come look at the van here was our discussion.
Mimi – Well, this is a surprise! I have not seen you for years!
Inspector – We have been busy.
Mimi – Here is what I would like to know, why don’t I ever see you yearly as originally told?
Inspector – We only visit yearly those people who we are worried about. Curbside Clippers is not one of them.
Mimi – Then explain to me why I must pay the $250.00 fee every year for you to inspect my van when I never see you?
Inspector – Well, we are understaffed, not enough time to cover all of Colorado.
Mimi – Thanks, but that does not answer my question.
Inspector – Had no answer.
Mimi – To me it is just an excuse for the government to do what most of us feared. Sit back, do nothing, we pay your salary to do nothing but suck in money like the blood sucking vipers the government is. For all you know I could be beating dogs, duct taping their mouths shut like the other mobile company and never clean my van. I could give you any pile of crap if I were dishonest and you would believe it. Furthermore, those people who are always in trouble that you do not shut down as you say you are so diligent about should be paying 1,000′s of dollars in fines and not make the rest of us support them.
Inspector – We are trying to do better and signed off so I could get my license.
So if someone tells you they are licensed by the Dept of Ag it really means nothing. Some of us are talking with an attorney, others are considering not paying the fee. They have done what most of us feared the most. Put the Almighty dollar before the animals.Read More...