In a groundbreaking series of events, the Governor of Nevada has signed a bill affecting the entire state of Nevada that bans individuals from leasing dogs. Known as Senate Bill 185, the existing bill prevents and bars businesses from issuing contracts that punish consumers financially when they leave bad reviews. However, this amendment to SB 185 also prohibits anyone from leasing, “any living animal or goods intended for personal, family or household use, including, without limitation, pets, tires, batteries, and hearing aids” if there is “residual financial value” when the lease concludes.
In layman terms, this means consumers can lease items that have value, such as furniture or a television, but cannot lease pets like dogs. One particular company in Nevada, called Bristlecone Holdings, has leased other items but specifically leases dogs under the name Wag Lending. This company has come under fire recently, after many dog owners realized they were paying over 170% of the price of their new pet on a leasing schedule. These owners were charged exorbitant fees and overcharged for the purchase of purebred dogs.
One such dog owner is a woman who was led to believe she was purchasing a golden retriever for her family at a cost of $2,400. The woman did not realize she had actually leased the dog and ending up owing $5,800 for the dog after the lease had concluded. This is considered a deceptive trade practice or even goes as far as consumer fraud, which is why the bill was introduced by Assemblywoman Lesley Cohen. Cohen, who represents Las Vegas, regularly rescues dogs and other animals, which made her particularly passionate about SB 185 and its passage.
The practice of dog leasing now exposed to consumers, Bristlecone Holdings has declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy and Wag Lending is no longer in business.