As defined by the Humane Society of the United States, “Puppy mills are breeding facilities that produce purebred puppies in large numbers. The puppies are sold either directly to the public via the Internet, newspaper ads, at the mill itself, or are sold to brokers and pet shops across the country.
The documented problems of puppy mills include over breeding, inbreeding, minimal veterinary care, poor quality of food and shelter, lack of socialization with humans, overcrowded cages, and the killing of unwanted animals. To the unwitting consumer, this situation frequently means buying a puppy facing an array of immediate veterinary problems or harboring genetically borne diseases that do not appear until years later.
Sadly, some dogs are forced to live in puppy mills their entire lives. They are kept there for one reason only: to produce more puppies. Repeatedly bred, many of these “brood bitches” are killed once their reproductive capacity wanes. Thousands of these breeding operations currently exist in the United States.”
The farming of dogs is an American disgrace. Take a stand against this industry. Do not purchase puppies in pet stores or on the Internet. Do your homework before you purchase a puppy. Better yet, visit your local shelter or rescue group and adopt a dog who already has no place to call home. Take pride in rescuing your dog and ask all of your dog-loving friends to do the same. It is high time to put an end to the pain and suffering forced upon the wonderful creatures that we call “man’s best friends”.
How is puppy milling different than reputable breeding?
Puppy mills exist for only one purpose – to make money. In a puppy mill, there may be as many as 30 different breeds and up to 800 or more breeding dogs. Every female is pregnant with every heat, including their first heat at 6 – 10 months old when they themselves are still a puppy. The puppies receive little to no medical attention, are not socialized with people, are almost always taken from their mothers too young, and often start their lives out in the world sick and scared. There is absolutely no regard to the health and well-being of the breeding dogs and when they can no longer produce puppies, the majority of them are killed.
Most often, a reputable breeder has great interest in one or perhaps two breeds. The purpose of their breeding program is to continually strive to bring their bloodlines closest to the breed standard. A reputable breeder spends a great deal of time, effort and money showing their dogs, socializing their dogs, having their breeding dogs tested for genetic defects, and being very careful to place their puppies in permanent, loving homes. A reputable breeder will at any time for any reason, take any of the puppies they’ve bred back into their care for the lifetime of the dog, taking full responsibility for the dogs that they have produced.
A reputable breeder wants to know about you and develop a relationship with you. They enjoy updates and photographs of their puppies as they grow and are always available to help with any questions or concerns about their puppies. One of the most important things to know is that a reputable breeder has nothing to hide. They want you to meet the parents of the puppies and see the environment the puppies are raised in.
We believe there are many reputable breeders out there, doing a fine job of raising healthy and sound puppies. Buyers must do their homework – contact the National Breed Clubs and find out who the reputable breeders are. Visit the breeder, meet the parents of the puppies, inspect the environment the puppies were raised in, ask lots of questions and if it feels like they’re hiding something, they probably are and you’d be best served to move on.
99% of these puppies come from puppy mills. When you purchase a puppy in this way, you are directly supporting a puppy mill and contributing to the pain and suffering of the parent dogs. Pet store employees will tell you that they only deal with “USDA licensed” kennels and the puppies have AKC papers. Unfortunately, these are the two organizations that give people the serious misconception that these puppies come from reputable kennels. The only thing that AKC papers mean is that the puppy and its ancestors are purebred. AKC papers mean absolutely nothing about the health and temperament of the puppy and nothing about the quality of the breeding establishment the puppy came from.
Why do the mills turn dogs over to rescue?
National Mill Dog Rescue has saved over 8,000 discarded breeding dogs from puppy mills across the United States. All of these dogs are brought back to their headquarters in Peyton, Colorado where they receive any necessary medical care, lots of love, and a safe place to stay until they are adopted. If you are interested in adopting one of NMDR’s rescues, please click here for all the details.
Information and image courtesy of National Mill Dog Rescue.