Just Puppies of Maryland in Rockville has been charged with selling puppies in violation of the No More Puppy Mills Act, Attorney General Brian Frosh said in a press release on June 17.
Charges have been filed against Just Puppies, which is located at the Twinbrook Center on Veirs Mill Road, as well as another of its locations in Towson. Store owner Mitchell Thomson has also been charged.
The Puppy Mill Act prohibits the offering of dogs and cats for sale by retail pet stores. Maryland law came into effect on January 1, 2020 to prevent animal abuse.
According to the statement of charges, in February 2020, “Just Puppies switched to a date-only model, but continued to sell puppies to consumers even after the effective date of No More Puppy-Mills. Act and misled consumers about his relationship to the sources of some of the puppies he sold.
Frosh’s office alleges that Just Puppies sold puppies against the law, which is considered an unfair or deceptive trade practice under Maryland’s Consumer Protection Act.
The stores and the owner are also accused of misleading consumers by saying they only bought puppies from breeders they knew. According to the charges, the stores bought puppies from breeders “with whom they had no direct relationship.”
The attorney general’s consumer protection division is seeking an injunction to stop selling in retail pet stores and impose a fine to include restitution, penalties and other costs.
A hearing will be held on September 13 at the Administrative Hearings Office in Hunt Valley, Md.
Consumers with complaints against Just Puppies of Maryland, Inc., Just Puppies, Inc., or Mitchell Thomson should call the Consumer Protection Division at 410-576-6559 or write to the Consumer Protection Division at 200 St. Paul Place, 16th Floor, Baltimore, MD 21202.