TRENTON - Some of New Jersey’s lawmakers are introducing a bill that they hope will stop animals from being abused.

Assembly Democrats Joe Lagana and Nancy Pinkin say that the legislation would prohibit pet shops in New Jersey from selling dogs obtained from puppy mills. It would also stop pet shops from selling any dog without an animal history or health certificate.

The bill defines a puppy mill as a “high volume commercial breeder that sells dogs for profit without providing public access to the site where breeding of its dogs takes place, and which engages in poor breeding practices such as breeding female dogs more than once per calendar year.”

"Puppy mill puppies are prone to congenital and hereditary conditions, and because they are often separated from their mothers too soon, they develop serious behavioral problems later in life,” Assemblywoman Pinkin said in a statement.

A dog obtained by a pet shop directly from a shelter, pound or animal rescue organization would be exempt from the measure.

The Assembly members say that the bill is in response to the controversy surrounding the Just Pups pet shops in New Jersey. 

Just Pups owner Vincent LoSacco is currently facing hundreds of animal cruelty charges stemming from incidents surrounding his East Brunswick and Paramus locations.