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Puppy Mills and the Mass Production of Pedigree Pets

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By Yahaira Cespedes    February 15, 2012 at 09:17AM / (29) comments

Puppy Mills: America's Cruel Secret

 

Pet stores exude an inviting environment designed to show you healthy and happy for-sale pets. If you buy the idyllic scene of frisky, clean puppies, you will pay good money for a pedigree. But would you still pay good money for the same puppies if you saw that the breeder kept them in cramped, filthy cages their whole lives? What pet stores won’t show you is where the puppies come from, and most come from puppy mills.

The pet trade is so iconic to American culture that Patti Page’s 1953 hit, How Much is That Doggie in The Window, is still a popular tune today. But the song has also become synonymous with the terrible practices of puppy mills, also known as backyard breeders.

Unlike Patti Page’s upbeat lyrics, bringing home a sick puppy that was bred in a puppy mill is nothing to sing about.
 

What is a Puppy Mill?

 

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) defines a puppy mill as "a large-scale commercial dog breeding operation where profit is given priority over the well being of the dogs."

The conditions of dogs housed in puppy mills have been consistently documented as appalling. Many undercover investigative reports exist detailing how bitches and studs are forced to breed until their deteriorated health renders them unprofitable to keep alive.

As the ASPCA goes on to mention, the resulting litters do not fare any better:

"Breeding at puppy mills is performed without consideration of genetic quality. This results in generations of dogs with unchecked hereditary defects."

Already born at a disadvantage, the puppies are then introduced to life on the mill. Perpetually kept in cramped and filthy rabbit cages, puppies are only cleaned up when the time comes to ship them to their final destination — usually a pet store. When the bitches and studs that sired the puppies are no longer capable of producing litters, they are put down.
 

Why Doesn’t the Government Shut Down Puppy Mills?

The Animal Welfare Act (AWA) was passed by Congress in 1966, and is currently regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA):

"AWA requires that minimum standards of care and treatment be provided for certain animals bred for commercial sale, used in research, transported commercially, or exhibited to the public."

But according to the USDA, puppy mills do not fall into the category of commercial sale. Inspection reports by the HSUS show that USDA-licensed breeders frequently get away with violations of the AWA. In other words, the practice of not providing bred puppies with basic necessities and veterinary care is not illegal.
 

Supply and Demand

Although the HSUS estimates that there are more than 10,000 puppy mills currently in operation, most mill breeders operate in secret. The main reason these operations stay hidden from the public eye is that most are run by the Amish and Mennonite community in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.

As documented by watchdog groups, concerned citizens, and animal rights organizations, mill breeders don’t view the substandard conditions in which breeding dogs are kept dogs as out of the ordinary. To puppy millers, dogs are considered livestock.

Unlike livestock, however, the only care puppies receive is a quick clean up the day they are shipped out (usually handled by a middleman) for sale. By the time a store-bought puppy receives its first real veterinary visit, its poor health is already at the chronic stage.
 

Puppy Mills in the Media

Currently, the most prominent depiction of the struggle to raise public awareness about puppy mill breeders is the movie, Madonna of the Mills. A labor-of-love collaboration from director Andy Nibley and his wife, producer Kelly Colbert, the film features dental assistant Laura Flynn Amato’s ongoing efforts to rescue bitches and studs that can no longer produce money for the farmers.

To date, she has saved more than 2,000 dogs.

In a recent telephone interview with the author, Mr. Nibley mentioned that the decision to make the movie occurred when his wife adopted Maisy, a Cocker Spaniel, from Rawhide Rescue. Maisy had survived a procedure commonly performed on dogs by puppy millers — her voice box had been crushed with a pipe to debark her. She is one of the dogs featured in the movie, which is currently being shown on HBO OnDemand. It can also be purchased on the Madonna of the Mills website.
 

A Support Network

Main Line Animal Rescue, a strong supporter of the movie, was featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show after founder Bill Smith posted a plea to her on a billboard she would see during her morning commute. Main Line Animal Rescue has also been featured on Nightline, and in People and Newsweek magazines in their ongoing effort to raise awareness about puppy mills.

Laura Flynn Amato continues to work tirelessly to rescue breeder dogs from puppy mills, and operates through No More Tears Rescue in Staten Island, NY.

 

Be Informed

After learning about the horrific practice of puppy mill farming, most people’s natural inclination would be to demand an answer from the pet store their puppy was bought from. Because many puppies in pet stores come from puppy mills (or backyard breeders), when questioned, the likely response will be a denial. However, Mr. Nibley also cautioned that puppy mill breeders have proliferated on the Internet, so pet stores are not the only places that are dealing in the puppy mill trade.

Adopted from Main Line Animal Rescue, Oprah Winfrey’s website provides a comprehensive checklist prior to purchasing a puppy. Among other tips, the list suggests to: 

  • Consider adoption
  • Do your homework before buying from a pet store
  • See where your puppy was born and bred
  • Get an animal locally
  • Share your puppy mill story with the ASPCA or the HSUS
  • Speak out to your legislator

And if finding a dog from a breeder is important to you, make sure you find a reputable dog breeder.
 

What NOT To Do

Do NOT head to the nearest pet store and buy a puppy with the intent of rescuing them. This only feeds money into the puppy mill industry and continues the vicious cycle. Until legislation is passed that makes this practice illegal, adoption and awareness is the best solution.

If you make the decision to give up your pet, take care to screen the potential adoptee. There is a market for obtaining animals to use for bait in dog fighting, as well as to sell for medical research.

Although many dedicated people and organizations devote their efforts towards ending the practice of puppy mill farming, it is important to mention that breeding animals for profit doesn’t stop with just dogs. Cats, birds, and exotic animals like ferrets are also bred for commercial sale, and with just as little consideration for their well-being.

During the three-year course of making Madonna of the Mills, Mr. Nibley tracked down singer Patti Page, who now resides in California. She collaborated with HSUS to put out a new version of the hit song to convey an uplifting message, titled, Do You See That Doggie in the Shelter? Ms. Page’s revised lyrics will be used to help raise awareness in mid-September, on Puppy Mill Awareness Day.

 

Additional Resources

 

ABC Nightline – Puppy Mill Article

ASPCA

Humane Society of the United States

Madonna of the Mills Movie

Main Line Animal Rescue

No More Tears Rescue

Oprah Winfrey Show - Puppy Mill Investigation

Puppy Mill Awareness Day

Rawhide Animal Rescue

 

Image: SOMMAI / via Shutterstock

Comments  29

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  • *America's* Cruel Secret
    02/15/2012 12:11pm



    This is by no means just an American issue. This is a World wide issue. EVERYONE should pay attention.

  • 02/22/2012 12:25pm

    Yes the animal rights deep ecology cult members have assaulted people around the world who raise animals for food, or use them as companions, or for any purpose. This world wide attack is funded by your donations to HSUS who does not use the money you give them to directly aid abused animals as they like to say in their commercials. Instead they bride representatives and lie to the IRS about their lobbying activities and deceive the public into donating to them under the guise of animal welfare when in fact they intend to end all use of animals everywhere. What will the world be like with no more pets and if everyone has no meat then many will die as 3 out of every 5 persons cannot sustain life on grain or vegetables alone. Mrs. Obama didn't care about the children who could not eat gluten and wanted to introduce the strict vegan diet in our schools. Remember the first step of any cult is to remove meat from your diet. Why because without the active form of VB12 the brain cannot think rationally nor regenerate its cells. This is exactly why cults put new members on strict vegan diets. Remember Jim Jones and the people he got to kill themselves. Ingrid NewKirk of PeTA brags about how she went in early to kill all the animals in the shelters before their owners could claim them. This is a sick cult.

  • Puppy Mills
    02/15/2012 01:20pm

    Madonna of the Mills is a terrific movie, and everyone who cares about dogs should see it! And I absolutely applaud your article to educate the public about the horrors of Puppy mills! However, there are some errors in here:Puppy mills are NOT the same as backyard breeders, although both are reprehensible. A backyard breeder is some yutz who bought a dog and then decided they could make money by selling puppies; so they get a second dog to breed to, and then produce puppies with no regard to their genetic health or their lives once they are paid for. Usually, the dogs and pups are not kept in the level of filth and disease that are pandemic in the mills. This kind of breeder probably produces a couple of litters every year; but cumulatively, their damage is almost as far reaching as the puppy mills. All of these will sell any puppy to anyone who has the money to purchase. These are the dogs who fill our shelters. A responsible breeder, by definition, is one who breeds for excellence, and will always take a dog back if necessary, even years later. They also screen potential homes, and do their best to make sure it will be a good family.

    Error #2 is that although the Amish and Mennonite communities are in puppy mills on a very large scale, Missouri is famed as the puppy mill capitol of the world. Last I heard, Texas has over 1500 puppy mills; they are EVERYWHERE, and in large numbers.

    Since a responsible breeder will always take their dogs back, it is the puppy mills and backyard breeders who fill our shelters with dogs (and cats; there are kitten mills, too). These people make money on the misery of innocent lives, and then we, as taxpayers, have to pay to house and then kill their unwanted progeny. A pet is killed in an American shelter EVERY 26 SECONDS. In California alone, we spend millions of tax dollars a year, and kill half a million pets every year, basically supporting these "businesses".
    As animal lovers, we MUST find a way to track dogs and cats from birth, so when they end up in our shelters we can charge the breeders, since people don't want to spay/neuter their dogs.
    And the third, and possibly most egregious error here, is "Do your homework before buying from a pet store." NO responsible breeder will ever sell through a pet store! Any dog bought in a pet store, at best, comes from some irresponsible backyard breeder who care only about the money, not the puppy!Any pet bought from a pet store only adds to the problem, and supports those who fill our shelters. I beg anyone who wants a pet to: #1: DO YOUR HOMEWORK AND research the breed you are interested in. If you work long hours, and watch TV on your off time, don't get a working dog, who needs lots of exercise!
    #2: Adopt from a shelter! 25% of dogs in shelters are purebred dogs; as a rescuer, I have taken dogs out of my local shelter that I swear were show dogs!And mixed breed dogs tend to be healthier.
    #3: alternately, adopt from a rescue, or from petfinder online. Most rescues post on petfinder; and I can tell you that we get about 4 pregnant females a year, so you can also get a puppy from a rescue or shelter!
    #4: If you simply must buy from a breeder, look at both parents; ask for certification of the parents for no genetic diseases, and insist on meeting the parents. If the parents are not on site, you are dealing with a backyard breeder! Make sure the contract says they will take the dog back if there is any problem; and look at these things BEFORE you look at the puppies, since after you fall in love, your brain will turn to mush :-)
    And finally, check out this film about purebred dogs:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GhXHFOrBbEc

  • 02/21/2012 10:51pm

    The film is a typical animal rights cult film that lies about the intent and function of the breeding behind purebred dogs. The film is biased and assumes that no dog should be bred or serve any purpose. If the ideas in this film were applied to human beings then no little people would be allowed to have children, no blind, deaf, or disabled person would be allowed to have children because their offspring might not meet the demands of the animal rights cult for perfection. Remember animal rights was invented by Hitler for stirring up hatred against ethnic groups. Now its being used to demonize all animal owners and breeders without regard to care they actually give to these animals. The film makers lie about mixed breed dogs as well by lying to the public about their supposed hybrid vigor. Well breeding one dog to another dog is not hybrid breeding. A donkey to a horse is hybrid breeding which results in a mule which has strength, but is infertile. So much for hybrid vigor. This documentary is a sham intended to slander purebred dogs and pit dog owners against each other.
    Purebred dog breeders were the ones who fought to change dog pounds into shelters and not they are being victimized by a cult who carefully uses people's love of animals to foment hate by name calling all dog breeders and kennels as puppy mills.

  • 02/22/2012 12:34pm

    This comment is rife with lies, there is not even close to 1500 dog kennels in Texas. The best count says there are 662 kennels and the majority of these hold less than ten animals total most as family pets. There a few larger show kennels with beautiful facilities. This number was used by THLN to fool the legislature into thinking HB1451 would be able to pay for itself through license fees, but that is not the case at all. Just more lies from animal rights.

  • 02/25/2012 10:44am

    You have obviously never known any of the fine, responsible "back yard" breeders who breed a few dogs as a hobby,(which by the way, our constitution allows us that freedm)or seen the thousands of breeders that are responsible and take excellent care of their dogs. The fact that you lump all small scale breeders under one term,"reprehensible" tells me that you have absolutely no idea of what you are talking about. It is not about whether a breeder breeds one, two or fifteen dogs a year. It is whether or not they are taken care of, kept clean, bred with an eye toward the betterment of the breed, and if they get their proper veterinarian care. Do they have a market of responsible people who will care for the dogs? Not all breeders flood the market with inferior, sick, abused animals. Shelter animals, mixed breeds, rescues and purebred dogs all have a place in the pet world. We, as a free people, still have the right to decide which one is best for our situation. Get a grip on reality. There are huge problems in the system... but concentrate on where those problems actually exist and not on the areas YOU have decided are a problem, based on your uninformed, biased attitudes that are founded on a cult mentality that is one of the MOST dangerous components to the animal world.

  • 02/25/2012 11:02am

    I have a real problem with labeling breeders. Quite frankly, as a responsible breeder, most of my breedings DO occur in the "back yard." "Commercial" breeders have become equated with "puppy mills", yet in Iowa, you become a "commercial" breeder if you have but three intact females - EVEN if you do not breed them. Is this really "commercial"? Or a puppy mill? In Illinois, it's five intact females - EVEN if they are not bred. Are these fine owners included in the "puppy mill" counts you are quoting? Should they be? Really?

  • 03/11/2012 02:05pm

    May I ask where you obtained your statistics?
    Most shelters in the NorthEast are importing puppies

  • whre will dogs come from
    02/17/2012 01:02pm

    They often cry Don't shop.. adopt.. well here is an idea.. when anyone wants to 'adopt" a dog from the shelter.. they should sit in the waiting room and allow the shelter to bring out a dog.. any dog.. then they should take that dog home no matter what size, color or non breed. Why should they be allowed to "shop" at the shelter ?The idea that shelters should, build "playrooms' and ship in 'sellable animals" from other places while many go out the back door dead is exactly what the term "shopping" is. bring in a saleable product and get rid of "merchandise " that does not sell.. and they say breeders are cruel...

    We cannot produce enough dogs for people.. many rescue people and animal rights groups like the HSUS do not want
    1, Breeding of "pure breds". they are "inbred" and sick and bred for "looks' only. Those who show dogs are only interested in winning etc..
    2. "backyard breeders ( what ever they are) because they are not for the "health of the dogs and they 'throw two dogs together to make money
    3. "puppy mill " dogs.. because they are sick inbreed, live in "deplorable conditions" and the owner are greedy and profit driven
    4. "mixed bred "dog because they are the result of mating that are not planned and most fall inot the term "backyard breeder"
    5, "Designer dogs" because they are not pure bred..and are 'too popular'and are also termed "backyard breeders"

    What do they want? 'responsible breeders'

    what are they?
    breeders who sell all dogs on castration contracts so that the people they sell to cannot breed on. breeders who only bred a female once or twice.. breeders who limit the use of their stud dogs, breeder who only keep X number of natural dogs ( in Texas that is three) etc.. in other words very few dogs produced.and important for us who do breed dogs.. a very limited gene pool which will eventually eliminate my breed and others. Right now the UK has 25 breeds on the"breeds at risk of extinction" list and the English Setter was just added. Two more are on the 'at watch" list. Very few people owning dog that can reproduce and even fewer people understanding what animal husbandry is are 'allowed" to breed dogs.
    Every 'puppy mill" dog that is "rescued' is castrated regardless of breed or rarity. how does that help dogs? Many of the "rescued" dogs have papers but they are castrated anyway so they don't add to "pet overpopulation".

    I would ask you.. if only the above "responsible breeders' are 'allowed" to breed dogs.. where will people get dogs? How much will they cost? Will children be deprived of the joy of owning a pet? Or should only certain people be allowed to own dogs? and if so who are "those people"

  • petfinder
    02/17/2012 01:06pm

    is the largest internet pet store on the web.

  • misinformation
    02/17/2012 01:19pm

    If you simply must buy from a breeder, look at both parents; ask for certification of the parents for no genetic diseases, and insist on meeting the parents. If the parents are not on site, you are dealing with a backyard breeder..

    say a poster

    HUH?/ most good breeders do not have both parents on site..if you are able to 'swear the are show dogs'in the shelter you should know that many good breeders use a stud dog that they do not own and that does not live with them..
    also dogs die when a pipe is shoved down their throat.. just another myth for people who know nothing about raising dogs.

    and stud dogs do not need to be "forced to breed".. in fact most people who support mandatory castration will tell you stud gos will chew through brick walls to get to a bitch is season.. so how can you have it both ways..? well it just depends on who you are talking to doesn't it.. one say dogs have to be forced.. the ohter says they will do anything to breed.. as long as it meet the 'agenda" it is ok to lie.

  • 02/17/2012 10:46pm

    How many puppies did you sell last year?

  • really?
    02/17/2012 11:01pm

    none of your business but the answer is zero,, how many did you sell? oh and did you get paid at your job?? looks like you claim to be a nurse.. nursing is a wonderful profession however it should be done for the 'love of the job'.. and not be a profit making enterprise after all those are sick people you are dealing with isn't it enough that you help them? Why should you get money too?
    This is just an example.. should people who breed dogs give them away? should they do it "for the love of the breed and not expect to ever make any money even though they sell the dogs.?

    should shelters charge money for dogs? or should they give them away for the "love of the dogs" many "shelters" have bank accounts that any breeder would envy.. profit is the name of their game..

  • AKC could stop it
    02/17/2012 11:06pm

    AKC could stop the mills tomorrow if AKC would stop registering the dogs that come out of the mills. It has always amazed me that they take money from the mills - knowing they are mills based on the numbers and breeds.
    And if the vets would stop giving health certificates to the puppy mill puppies in the local pet stores, the pet stores could not stay in business. The vets knowingly keep the stores, and thus the mills in business just to make money. So sad. And disgusting.

  • 02/19/2012 06:20pm

    The AKC is a registry, not a police organization. When registering dogs, they have to rely on the honesty of the person filling out the form. They can, and do, suspend registration privileges if a person lies on the forms, is convicted of animal cruelty or neglect, etc. Although they do conduct inspections, they can not inspect every breeder. out there.

    I am a veterinarian and a breeder. I absolutely hate to hear the term "puppy mill" and "backyard breeder". There is no legal definition of puppy mill. The ASPCA defones them as "large scale" breeders". What is the definition of "large scale"? Three litters a year? 30? I've know people who rarely bred who I would not send my worst enemy to and I've known breeders who had 30 or 40 dogs and many litters a year that I would not hesitate to recommend. Number don't tell the whole story. It's the condition the animals are kept in, the effort put forth by the breeder to avoid health defects, the knowledge of pedigrees and lines the breeder brings to the breeding program. Inbreeding is not necessarily a bad thing if it's done judiciously by someone who knows their lines. I've seen plenty of hereditary defects in mutts and designer dogs. In fact, I recently saw a designer puppy with no less than 3 defects that would all eventually require surgical repair.

  • 03/11/2012 02:03pm

    AKC now requires that a DNA profile be done on all dogs that have been bred more than 6 times.
    When this became the rule, many commerical breeders just joined together and made their own registry.
    People looking for puppies just believed the BS that the new registry was "just as good as AKC" So who is to blame for keeping your alleged "puppy mills" in business? You are

  • 03/13/2012 01:31pm

    What an irrational comment my dear. You may lash out if you like, but it is simply not true that this is my fault. Hope you feel better though. My experience with AKC was when I was involved in trying to save some poor dogs out of a horrible hoarding sitution.
    I assume you breed. Reputable breeders have no problem with DNA testing. Since you don't even want to spend the money to DNA test, I assume you do not test for defects prevalent in your breed or breeds. Haven't met anyone who backyard breeds or sells to pet stores who cares enough about their dogs to do so. I have friends who are top notch breeders, seek to better the breed, and test to be sure they aren't breeding dogs who are passing on genetic defects - so I don't hate breeders. Just feel sorry for dogs who are bred to make money.

  • 03/14/2012 12:23am

    All my dogs have health checks for their breed. There is no need for a DNA profile on my dogs since none of them have been bred.

  • I see
    02/17/2012 11:18pm

    you do not want to answer my questions even though I answered yours
    While some commercial breeders do breed pedigreed dogs.. most now breed "designer dogs" all sorts of mixes that they can sell and that the public wants.

    AKC registrations are private .. so you really have no idea what they do and what they register.
    You are now accusing veterinarians of misleading the public and giving health certificates to dogs that they should not give them to? If so then you should report what you know to your state board of veterinarians...why just post here when you can do something.

  • 02/19/2012 06:31pm

    I am a veterinarian. When a dog or cat is brought to me for a health certificate, I have to examine what is brought to me. I can't make assumptions about where the animals come from. I can't refuse to issue a health certificate if I think the pet *may* have come from, or be going to, a less than ideal situation. I can't necessarily identify hereditary defects on an exam.

  • Dog Breeders, rescues etc
    02/18/2012 08:18am

    I am really disgusted with this whole skewed view of things in the dog world. Yes, I agree about puppy mills and think there should be a way of putting them out of business, but, and I can't stress this enough...
    everyone who has a breeding pair or two of dogs is not a bad,or irresponsible breeder. Many of them just know how many they can adaquetly and properly care for. I have purchased several dogs from home breeders. I find ones who have chosen the parents wisely, know the genetic backgrounds on the parents and other background dogs and breed for temperment, conformation,and health. They do check and test for conditions and they do keep their dogs in a clean environment. They do innoculate, etc. The term Backyard Breeder has absolutely no negative connotation to me. It is an irresponsible and unscrupulous breeder who breeds in the "back yard" or anywhere else that is the problem. #2 I have seen places, (many places) that call themselves breed rescues, or pet rescues that make me wonder if the dog was rescued and ended up there, what in God's name was it rescued from??? Many "dog rescues" are nothing more than puppy mills that don't breed the dogs. The dogs are kept in deplorable conditions and are the victims of hoarders who call themselves something else and make money on the dogs. (I know there are wonderful rescues, as well, that do a super job at rescueing and rehoming dogs.) Shelter? They are as big a joke as the rest of the people. A group of people, (most of whom don't know nearly as much as they think they do) set themselves up as the "pet police" and stick their noses into things that are none of their business. It is to the point now, that a person can not even purchase a dog from a rescue or a legitimate breeder without being subject to more scrutiny than a person trying to adopt a child. Believe it or not, there are people out here other than these self appointed dog police who love dogs, know how to take care of dogs properly, and do hate the things that are cruel, irresponsible and inhumane. Being one of them, I resent being treated as though I am retarded, too stupid to know how to take care of my dogs, or as though I am a criminal because things might not be done to fit someone elses agenda. The shelters have a place. Mixed breed dogs make great pets and are absolutely not any healthier than any other dog unless an irresponsible breeder is not testing and screening for negative genetic factors. There is room for responsible small home breeders, adoptable shelter dogs,and rescue dogs. Many more dogs could be in loving homes if the criteria for adopting was finding a dog a good home, not making money on the dogs they place.(and before you start on that, I do know that it costs money to recue and care for a dog in order to place it. I am talking about over charging to the point of basically making it impossible for a good home to afford to rescue or adopt.) A person doesn't have to have a six figure income in order to love a dog or give it proper care. I am for controlling the pet population... it is not going to happen because all people will not spay or neuter... nor should they. I am all about the humane treatment of animals, but this world is a cruel place with cruel people in it. That isn't going to change.Each of us can change a small portion of the world that we touch and I try to do that. This is bigger than us. We have to take it one dog at a time... and stop being so holier than thou...

  • Ashamed of PET MD
    02/18/2012 08:36am

    I used to credit PET MD with being a reputable source of good information. I've revised that opinion. This article is filled with misinformation and half-truths.
    There are good, respectable breeders who do a wonderful job of producing stable, healthy, well-socialized puppies.

    And be sure of this - the word "adopt" is misused these days. Money is exchanged. When you buy a dog from a shelter - that's exactly what you are doing. Buying it. "Rescuing" dogs has gotten to be such a big business that shelters are now IMPORTING stray dogs from other countries to be purchased...er...adopted.

  • 02/19/2012 06:44pm

    Great comments! We're getting to a point where responsible breeders are afraid to say they "sell" dogs. Importing strays from foreign countries has become big business in some areas of the US. It's a dangerous practice. These same groups will cry out about the horrible pet over-population problem. If it's so bad, why do they need to go overseas to fill their shelters?

  • so
    02/18/2012 04:06pm

    we have narrowed it down
    no "puppy mill" dogs
    no "purebred 'dogs
    no "backyard breeders. so where will the dogs come from?
    The majority of pets are obtained from acquaintances and family members. About 15 to 20 percent of dogs are purchased from breeders, and 10 to 20 percent of cats and dogs are adopted from shelters and rescues. (Source: Ralston Purina and NCPPSP)
    More than 20 percent of people who leave dogs in shelters adopted them from a shelter. (Source: NCPPSP)

    READ THIS CAREFULLY 20% of dogs in shleter CAME FROM A SHELTER


    Facts about Pet Ownership in the U.S.:

    About 63 percent of all households in the United States have a pet. (Source: American Veterinary Medical Association)
    About 75 million dogs and about 85 million cats are owned in the United States. (Source: Pet Food Institute)
    According to the National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy (NCPPSP), about 65 percent of pet owners acquire their pets free or at low cost.
    The majority of pets are obtained from acquaintances and family members. About 15 to 20 percent of dogs are purchased from breeders, 10 to 20 percent of cats and dogs are adopted from shelters and rescues, and 2 to 10 percent are purchased from pet shops. (Source: Ralston Purina and NCPPSP)

    These stats are directly from the ASPCA

    2-10 percent are purchased from pet stores .. that leave 98-90 percent of dogs that are purchased from another source.. so if "puppy mills" are such a problem why aren't they supplying 90-98% of any purchased dogs.why aren't most dogs already from "puppy mills"?.

    so if we delete all of these sources.. where will dogs come from?

  • AR's use of puppy mills
    02/21/2012 10:43pm

    The statistics do not support the animal rights contenders of an over abundance of dogs. These animal rights cult members want to end all breeding and they are using the slander and the images of a few to emotionally move people to push for laws that are not in the best interests of animals. Mandatory spay and neuter of all pets means that no more animals will be reproduced. The problem with this whole scene now is that a lot of people are making money off of rescues. Know that the majority of these raids end with the charges being reversed in court. This means these raids were a sham. In Texas a video showed that the so-called Houston Pet police actually in the act of manufacturing the evidence. They terrorized the owner’s kids and the animals. These raids are always conducted right before its fundraising time. Many rescue groups admit that having a raid is the quickest way to raise money. More often than not they kill the animals. The other problem with the animal rights culture is its contradictions. They say they want the best for animals but then mandate laws that result in the end of that species or dangerous surgeries while pushing for laws that actually will cause the death of animals. That is the purpose of mandatory spay and neuter at the federal level. For example: the PUPS bill in congress mandates that owning one intact dog makes you a commercial high volume breeder subject to home invasion and warrantless searches by guess who.
    Another issue is the idea that all pets should be born free of all defects. This is not possible as nature builds into every living entity 30 or more so called defective genes for the purpose of ensuring the survival of the species should some drastic change occur in the environment. The goal of the animal rights cults HSUS and PeTA is to end all use of animals for any purpose whatsoever and that includes as pets. Right now regulations for a bill in Texas is being written entirely by THLN an animal rights cult group. The only two dog breeders represented on this board cannot vote because this cult wrote into the bill that the breeders who may serve on the advisory board must be licensed under this bill first. So they have no real input into these regulations while the animal rights members who out number everyone write these regulations to severely restrict all dog breeding. This bill is outrageous and was written to end all dog breeding. The supporter of this bill has said he will come back year after year and lower the number of intact dogs to zero, which means no breeding. This is not about animal welfare this is about changing society to end all use of animals for any purpose even as guide dogs, or for medicines such as insulin. Even the Texas VMA has as an animal rights cult member as its lobbyist. Once they end the ownership of all animals and the lives of all domestic animals who will they focus on next? Will they then decide whether or not we human beings should have children? Know already that Peter Singer one of the leaders of the animal rights movement published an article in the New York Times titled "Should This Be The Last Generation?" This article encourages our young people to spay and neuter themselves and then they can party down guilt free until no more human beings are born. What idiocy this is and our regulatory czar Cass Sunstein under Obama is a fervent animal rights cult player who recently pushed for a law against all children under 18 from working with animals on a farm. Where will the next generation of farmers come from? That is the point of this law to eliminate all future farmers who would raise animals for meat. This cult believes its right to lie to the public just to pass these laws.
    Animal Welfare or Animal Rights?
    Here are some of the differences: 
As animal welfare advocates. . .
    · We seek to improve the treatment and well-being of animals. 
· We support the humane treatment of animals that ensures comfort and freedom from unnecessary pain and suffering. 
· We believe we have the right to “own” animals — they are our property. 
· We believe animal owners should provide loving care for the lifetime of their animals.
    As animal rights activists. . .
    · They seek to end the use and ownership of animals, including the keeping of pets. 
· They believe that any use of an animal is exploitation so, not only must we stop using animals for food and clothing, but pet ownership must be outlawed as well. 
· They want to obtain legal rights for animals as they believe that animals and humans are equal. 
· They use false and unsubstantiated allegations of animal abuse to raise funds, attract media attention and bring supporters into the movement. 
· (The Inhumane Crusade, Daniel T. Oliver – Capital Research Center) 
For more information: 
http://www.cfodconline.org/ 
www.humanewatch.com
www.bewareanimalradicals.com
http://www.petpac.net/ 
http://www.exposeanimalrights.com/ 
www.naiaonline.org 
www.saveourdogs.net
www.nathanwinograd.com
www.saova.org

  • Good for You!
    02/22/2012 06:41am

    Excellent comments. I am blind and have a guide dog partner. Are you aware that one was shot by a PETA member because it would be "better off dead than a slave for the rest of it's life"? Needless to say, it infuriated me. My animals are taken care of far better than many people's children. My guide dog looks forward to having a job to do. My life is full and productive because of him and my emotional well being is over the top because of the emotional bond my animals and I share. Thank you for speaking up. Andi Mills

  • Response to Sedna101
    02/23/2012 11:11am

    To Sedna101, where do you get your information? How do you define puppy mill? I live in Texas and there are not 1500 puppy mills as depicted in the few videos shown over and over again of awful looking places. There may be 1500 total breeders ranging from small in home show breeders to large commercial breeders. There are 35 USDA licensed commercial breeders in Texas. A new statute 802 has new low caps on the number of dogs owned and puppies sold calling for these breeders to be regulated and licensed by Texas. These numbers are so low that they are forcing people to build kennels at $35,000 - $50,000 and they will no longer be allowed to have dogs or litters in their homes. Sadly many of these good breeders will simply stop breeding. TX estimated about 500 breeders would fall under the new rules and definitions. AKC estimated around 200. When the good breeders who are not in the business or make profit stop breeding there will probably only be around 150 applying for a license. TX based their budget on the 500 number and are suppose to be able to collect enough money from the breeders to cover the expense of enforcing the new law. The cost to the 150 breeders a year will be more than $3000. each. This new law written by animal rights is designed to regulate all breeders out of existence hence no more pets. One other of the many misinformation you posted is the 25% purebreds in shelters. This is bad information the number is half that and those dogs don't come from purpose-bred litters.

  • Our Rights
    02/25/2012 10:13am

    There are definetly many issues concerning the fact that dogs are suffering, dogs are abused, there are puppy mills, and I am very much aware of all that. My subject here is My Rights... Our rights as responsible pet owners. There are millions of people who are responsible pet owners. We love our pets/working dogs and (sadly) we care for them better than many children are cared for. Our animals are happy, well adjusted, socialized and comfortable.They get excellent Veterinarian care. We have the right to decide if we want to buy a purebred dog, or if we want to adopt a pet, get one from an accidental breeding of a female that belongs to Uncle George or "rescue" a pet. It is our reponsibilty to do our homework, research the breed or individual dog to see if it will suit our lifestyle, research the breeder, and choose our new puppy. Although I am an advocate of spaying and neutering, I should have the right to decide whether or not I would like to breed my dog or keep it intact, knowing that I would have the additional responsibility of containing the dog so as to prevent accidental breedings. I have had dogs for forty years, kept many intact animals and have NEVER had an accidental litter, nor have my males ever bred another dog by "accident." I am sick and tired of the idea that only a few self appointed pet police know how to deal with things,think they have the right to make rediculus rules that govern my freedom of choice and treat us as if we are all too retarded to handle/raise/control/or responsibly care for our dogs. It is not rocket science. There are enough people out there who are doing the wrong things, the horrible things, the unthinkable things... spend your time dealing with those people and stop trying to blanket legislate rules and crazy things that encroach on my right to take care of my animals my way. When I was breeding, I had a waiting list for my puppies. They went to good homes, I followed up on them and I never had any "left overs". I absolutely detest the fact that animal activists and their radical views are allowed the leeway that they have. God himself gave man the right to use animals as food, and as beasts of labor and as companions... "... to have dominion over them..." (Genesis) He charges us with a responsibility to care for them, as well... "Blessed be the man who regardeth his beast." So, take your self righteous attitudes and apply them where they are needed and leave the ones of us who are not part of the problem alone. You will have your hands full without harrassing the responsible pet owners and breeders.

  • America's secret
    03/11/2012 01:56pm

    America's dirty secret is not breeding, it is the theft of purebred dogs by Animal Control. It always amazes me to read stories of the filth, parasites etc that Animal Control and the HSUS claim these animals have and how they have never seen such poor condition of the animals which they promptly offer up for adoption(sale) 2 days later.
    The one thing all those parroting the offical HSUS crap about commerical breeders seem to forget one thing........ animals will not produce healthy offspring when conditions are not right for the offspring to survive. How wonderful that the Almighty has this natural means of birth control. However, according to HSUS they indeed seem to know better than God. They also know everything about dogs when none have owned a dog nor studied any animal care procedures.
    I am a breeder. I am responsible for the animals I bring into this world. I am not responsible for the puppies that result from Aunt Mary's bitch who was let out loose while she was in heat. I am not responsible for the puppies that came from a male breeding his dam and the disbelief from the owner that he would breed his own mother!!!!! With all the comments being thrown about maybe those who consider breeders on level with Satan should look in their own neighborhood first and leave breeders alone


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