The United Kingdom is cracking down on "puppy farms" with a ban on third-party sales of puppies and kittens, including by pet stores.

The decision was finalized after a public consultation found 95 percent of the country supported the ban. Animal Welfare Minister David Rutley said Sunday that the law will go into effect soon. 

"This ban on third party sales of puppies and kittens is part of our commitment to make sure the nation’s much-loved pets get the right start in life," Rutley said in a statement


The new law means that those who want to adopt puppies or kittens will have to consult directly with a breeder or a rehoming center, according to the government.

Marc Abraham, the founder of advocacy organization Pup Aid, said the ban is "a real victory for grassroots campaigners as well as the U.K.'s dogs and cats," according to The Associated Press.

Advocates have pushed for the ban for months, saying many pet stores and unsupervised dealers keep the animals in dirty and crowded conditions, The Guardian reported

"This will help to crack down on puppy farms and make it much harder for high volume low welfare breeders, both licensed and unlicensed, whose trade relies on third party sellers," the government statement on Sunday said.

"These include the early separation of puppies and kittens from their mothers and the increased likelihood of long journeys that puppies or kittens have to undertake," it added. "All of these can contribute to an increased risk of disease and a lack of socialization for the puppies and kittens."