Santee Alley Illegal Animal Sales

Email fromMadeleine Fisher-Kern

Councilman Weiss:

As my councilman, I would like to put before you an issue that has been a problem for many years with little in the way of a solution. Perhaps you can be the activist that puts it before the other councilmembers as it effects all their districts regarding health and humane concerns.

There has been an active illegal trade in animals in Santee Alley in the downtown garment district. This trade is done out of trucks and along the alley with the acceptance of a the kiosk owners who sell their goods in that area. Baby turtles are kept in buckets and taken out and placed in plastic containers filled usually filled with too much water. They are stacked up ten or more and allowed to sit in the heat in front of these kiosks till sold.

Individuals are seen walking up and down the alley hawking and holding either a young puppy, or young bunny, or some exotic reptile or caged birds. They are sold to anyone willing to pay the price. These people are neither licensed to sell or caring in the treatment of these animals.

What happens to these animals if not sold is not something that I wish to think about.

Including the concerns for these young animals is also the health concerns that face the unknowing person who purchases these unfortunate creatures. It is known that turtles and other reptiles spread salmonella and e-coli if not handled properly. It is known that these young animals get no veterinary care to assure their health. So, not only is this a humane concern, it is a concern for the Health Department and for our city.

The Department of Animal Services is well-aware of the Santee Alley illegal animal trade. Wildlife Officer Greg Randall is aware of this ugly situation and is in need of some strong support to help eradicate it. Jim Bickhart is a bit busy these days. This is most annoying as the Mayor has made several promises to the animal rescue community and has met none of them also being busy with other things.

Councilman Weiss, we need an LA Municipal Law 53.42 regarding Public safety and selling animals off the street that is more than a slap on the wrist. These animal traders must see that the ongoing selling of these animals is not feasible economically or legally. These animal traders must see that this city is serious about putting a stop to the possible health risk to this city's citizens and the animal abuse they are thoughtlessly involved in for illegal financial gain.

If you would go to: or go to and click on the Extra! Extra! link. You will get a clearer picture from the two articles and more impressively, you will be able to read e-mails from those who live in the city and those who visit. Their reactions are not complimentary to our city's turning a blind eye to this crime.

Madeleine Fisher-Kern

Check her site out and please let me know more about this situation.

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