07/08/2010 07:37 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

San Francisco May Ban The Sale Of Most Pets

San Francisco's Commission of Animal Control and Welfare announced today that buying what they call, "companion animals", could be anyone's ticket to jail. These animals include dogs, cats, hamsters, mice, rats, chinchillas, guinea pigs, birds, snakes, lizards, and nearly every other critter.

If the ordinance passes San Francisco could be the first city in the nation to ban the sale all pets except fish. According to The San Francisco Chronicle:

"People buy small animals all the time as an impulse buy, don't know what they're getting into, and the animals end up at the shelter and often are euthanized," said commission Chairwoman Sally Stephens. "That's what we'd like to stop."

This could mean that San Francisco residents looking to buy a pet will have to go to another city, adopt one from a shelter or rescue group, or find one through the classifieds.

For some this could be the solution to irresponsible pet purchases, though pet stores owners may feel the impact of such changes if the law is passed at tonight's commission meeting.

"It's terrible. A pet store that can't sell pets? It's ridiculous," said John Chan, manager of Pet Central on Broadway, which has been in business 30 years. "We'd have to close."