Cars rushed by Gary Vella as he walked past the Park Place Mall where he protested Pets at Park Place for over a year.

Hes been protesting pet stores in Tucson for at least the past 15 years and is the president of SPEAK Tucson, an animal advocacy group.

Standing on the corner of Broadway and Chantilly, Vella felt like his protesting made an impact. He said most of the pet stores hes protested in Southern Arizona have closed down.

His mission is to close down pet stores because he said a lot of the dogs from there can be bred in puppy mills.

They raise the dogs like factory farm style. You can have 200, 250, 300 dogs in one breeding operation, Vella said.

Vella said hes gone into Pets at Park Place and have seen them not follow state laws. One of the laws he said they violated at first was not putting up information about the dogs.

As soon as they opened up, they didnt have any sourcing information or where they got the dogs from, he said.

Pets at Park Place later put up information about the breeder on the enclosure.

Arizona state law (Arizona Revised Statute 44-1799.10) says pet stores have to have information on who bred the dog and it has to be on the enclosure or cage.

Vella said he talked to the man who incorporated Pets at Park Place and told him about their concerns.

Weve made it clear to him that no matter how many times he comes in to Tucson and tries to set up his puppy pushing operation, hes going to have to deal with us and the rest of the animal advocacy community here, Vella said.

KGUN9s Andrew Christiansen looked into the articles of incorporation for Puppy World. It was a store in Marana that closed in 2020. The same contact information for the incorporator of that store was also on the organizers contact information for Pets at Park Places articles of organization.

Christiansen tried calling Pets at Park Place, but didnt get an answer back from them after leaving a voicemail.

Vella and SPEAK are still hoping to shut down Animal Kingdom, a pet store at the Tucson Mall. They are going to be protesting there every month.

What we do may not completely shut him down, but I know its going to impact his business, Vella said.