Irvine Company Bans Sales of Dogs and Cats at Its Properties

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The Irvine Company, owner of Newport Beach’s Fashion Island, the Irvine Spectrum and several other retail centers and plazas, will ban the sale of dogs and cats at any of its properties, the Independent has learned.

The decision, made last month, is outlined in a letter sent to the Irvine Mayor Sukhee Kang by Irvine Company Senior Vice President Michael J. Le Blanc. The letter was obtained by the Independent.

Irvine is considering banning the sale of dogs and cats by city ordinance.

Russo's store in the Irvine Spectrum.

The Irvine Company’s decision will affect Russo’s Pet Experience, which has been a tenant of Fashion Island since the late 1960s. The pet store chain also has a store in the Irvine Spectrum.

Le Blanc wrote in the July 25 letter that “effective immediately, the Irvine Company will not lease any new space to tenants who intend to sell dogs or cats.” He added, however, that Russo’s would not be affected until its current lease expires.

Irvine Company spokesman Erin Freeman confirmed the decision to the Independent this morning. According to Freeman, the policy will only affect the sale of dogs and cats, and not other animals.

When asked why the Irvine Company had decided to prohibit the sale of dogs and cats only, Freeman cited “retail trends” as the reason, but would not comment further on any other aspect of the decision.

The Independent is attempting to reach the owners of Russo’s for comment
but so far have been unable to do so. Check back at for updates.

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  1. It’s happening city and state wide all over U.S. and Canada… Pet Store Puppy Commercial breeding dirty little secret is out and people do not approve. I hope Newport Beach City Council jumps on the wagon soon lest they be left behind with a reputation for being inhumane.

  2. Unbelieveably stupid corporate decision! Soon it will be a crime to even BUY a puppy! How UN AMerican is this? George Washington was a dog breeder. He FOUNDED the American Fox Hound breed. UN AMERICAN. Just WHO are these corporate dregs making the decision that we cannot sell or buy puppies? THEY NEED TO BE FIRED.

  3. What next? Yes, I agree, let’s go with this and next ban anyone who has more than one child from living in Irvine, that would be great, hate noisy kids.

    What then, ban all department stores from issuing credit cards because they cause people to go into debt. Irvine should start with Bloomingdales first then move on to Macys. Irvine should be the best cookie cutter community full of dumb people who wish, no beg, to led around by their noses. Who is the Irvine, an OLD farming family, pandering to, yep the word is pandering and old man Irvine must be turning over in his grave…………. where are his heirs today, shame on them.

  4. This is a travisty to American free enterprise. How could the Irvine Co. known for it’s conservative AMerican values submit to a radical animal rights groups to alter the way they do business? It’s disgusting! No group has the right to dictate what is sold in a private business. That is communism. There are outlets for buying a rescue pet…Petco and shelters. Pet stores have a function also…to sell the pets they choose. We went to Petco in NB for 6 months trying to find a dog. We could not find a rescue dog that was healthy, attractive, not abused, and the breed we wanted. Many were blind , shaved, diseased, afraid, etc. We finally bought a wonderful Maltese at a pet store and it’s healthy and happy and perfect. Shame on you Irvine Co. I will not ever think of your company in the same light as Americana.
    Therese Loutherback
    Corona Del Mar

  5. instead of limiting what can be sold why doesn’t Irvine Co GIVE a store front to a shelter group? That way both businesses.. ( yes selling shleter dogs is a business.. they even call it the shelter industry)can compete and see who stays in business longer.That is the American way.. why hasn’t CAPS and those like them rented their own store front to sell dogs and cats.. and whatever they want to sell as accouterments. If their “product” is better and their pricing they will drive the pet stores out of business..
    want to place more shelter dogs.. open your own store.. Irvine CO.. no “fashion” is an island..there are plenty of places to shop other than places owned by your almost monopoly industry..

  6. Looks like someone needs to do their research on the more that the 5000 puppy mills that exist in this country and exactly what a puppy mill is. I don’t know how you can compare this story to children, unless you are intelligently discussing child traffiking. Should we ban children just because the law decided that abusing a child is punishable. How can you compare children and grocery stores to the abuse animals endure at the hands of money grubbing mill owners and the stores that supply them. If you’ve ever adopted an animal from a shelter, you will quickly learn the many rescue groups that place animals that have run out of time and will be euthanized. Fortunately, they are able to do this without a store front, through networking. I myself found a home for a stray, and it went to my neighbor…No storefront needed. However, it sure would be nice, that if one day, the storefronts that do exist, put up rescues only, the ones that are facing death invariably. This will improve the state of how many animals are euthanized everyday, and eliminate the suffering of puppy mill animals. You know the animals that sit in a cage for years and give birth so that someone might pay thousands of dollars for it. Hey! If it looks like a dog, and barks like a dog, it might just be a dog. Thousands of dollars or just a few. A good dog doesn’t know the difference, just the people who exploit.