Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Puppy Mill Action Week

   No dog loving person would knowingly support a puppy mill. They are horrid places where dogs are abused, used as breeding factories and live in squalor. The key is doing your homework before investing your money and your heart in a sick puppy.
*Please note that I will NOT share those gut-wrenching photos of abused, sick, or neglected dogs. We have all seen them and the images haunt me. I refuse to use the shock value to guilt you into action. Instead, enjoy what a healthy happy puppy should look like when you welcome them into your family. This little pup was up for adoption at the humane society.
Paisley the Weather Lab still sleeps like this!
   Puppy mills are rampant across the United States and many operate in accordance with the very weak state laws. It is estimated that as many a 90% of pet store puppies originate in puppy mills. When you ask how much is that doggy in the window, the answer could be much more than you are wanting to pay. Puppy mill dogs tend to be very ill, have a poor diet, never been socialized and no veterinary care.
   This is Puppy Mill Action Week and a great time to stand in support of the elimination of puppy and kitten mills.
Ways to Help
• Take the Humane Society pledge
• Spread the word
• Contact the media
• Donate to help
• Support stores that carry adoptable/rescue pets
Pierre was irresistible
Is It a Puppy Mill Puppy?
• Are you considering that cute little pup with the big price tag wagging its tail in the pet store? It is estimated that 90% of pet store puppies started life in a puppy mill. Keep on walking.
• If you arrive to pick out a puppy and see the people are selling a variety of different purebreds and “designer” hybrid breeds, they are more than likely a puppy mill. This is where you turn around and leave. Quickly!
• If you are not allowed to see where the puppies are bred and kept, there is probably a reason. Puppy mills usually consist of row after row of wire cages or plastic kennels overflowing with dogs and puppies. If buyers saw the truth, the mills would not make any money.
• The people that run puppy mills don’t care what happens to the dog after they get paid. A reputable breeder will have contracts you must sign and conduct an in-depth interview with any prospective buyers.
• No health guarantees. WARNING!! RUN!!  
• Responsible breeders do not sell puppies at flea markets or in store parking lots. NEVER buy a puppy from the back of a truck at the local discount store.
Squeee! How could we resist that face AND those ears?
  But You Really Want a Puppy!
   When you are looking for a puppy or dog, adoption is always a wonderful way to help save an animal. As you know, shelters are full of mixed breed and purebred dogs looking for a loving family. If you have your heart set on a special breed, many areas have breed specific rescues.
   Where do you go if you want a purebred puppy and there are none available for adoption? This is when many prospective buyers turn to backyard breeders. These are usually people that have one or two breeds and LOTS of puppies. If the person you are dealing with ALWAYS has puppies available, I suggest you look elsewhere. Many of these dogs are inbred which results in aggression and inherit serious health problems. The mothers do not receive proper prenatal care and the puppies are not seen by the veterinarian. Backyard breeders are like puppy mills on a smaller scale. They both treat the dogs and puppies as a cash crop.
 • Do your homework! I cannot stress the importance of following your head and gut instead of your heart when deciding where to get your puppy. Check with the AKC or UKC for a list of breeders in your area. There are also countless breed-specific groups online that can help you navigate through the process.
•Remember: No responsible breeder is in it for the money. They have a breeding program, proper veterinary care during pregnancy, test for health and temperament as well as make sure their pups are well socialized. The most impressive breeding program that I know of is Sand Spring Chesapeakes. You can read the lengths a successful breeder goes to in order to maintain the integrity of the breed they love. 
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It’s your house so if you like it then you shoulda put a ring on it!


  1. we hope that we will get better laws to make an end of this puppy mills and the stores who sell pets like shoes or buns... but it seems that all our petitions and complaints are like dust in the wind... but we carry on an on ;O)

  2. It's really important to do your research if you're getting a pup from a breeder - me and Brinley both came from a show breeder who does all kinds of genetic testing. Da mommas flew to Ohio to get us and if she hadn't liked them in da interview - no puppies. She turns down a LOT of people - da mommas say dey wuz lucky to get us.

  3. Well said. Thank you, Miss Melissa!

  4. When we travel we always see big homemade roadside signs for puppies and it makes us cringe. We all come from amazing breeders and feel so bad that so many humans don't understand why good breeders are so important.

  5. This was a great informative post. Thank you so much for the appreshiation and shout out on my breeding program. Being a vet tech I want to do everything right. It’s not about the money as there isn’t much when done correctly, I want to breed healthy sound good tempered dogs that people can enjoy for many years!

  6. The problem with that is, what happens to those pups? It's not their fault they were born in a puppy mill. That's just so sad from so many angles.

    1. I am glad you brought this question up. I was wondering the same thing. If you want to find out what happens to some dogs search for Undercover Investigation Reveals Dogs Suffering in Dental Experimentation. There is an article about it on the Humane Society and one from NBC News. I read both.

  7. There are two adorable mini Dachshunds in our neighborhood. Both rescued from Puppy mills where both had been 'baby factories' and their paws never touched the ground.....then they were RESCUED and are living the life of took them a while to not be so fearful but now they are both Great Danes and family protectors in their own minds.
    Hugs madi and mom

  8. Very well said! Thank you for posting. I hope to see a day where there will be no puppy mills!

  9. In hindsight our first 2 dogs may have been mill dogs. Breaks my heart tipo think we may have supported that. But we know better and did better. As I type this Emma is in my lap. Her mom was rescued from one of the biggest mill busts in Canadian history. Her mo, Muffin was pregnant at the time and Emma and her siblings are first generation 'freedom dogs!'

  10. I am off to take the pledge.

  11. When Ma was lookin' for ME, she called other 'breeders' in her state, and one backyard breeder didn't even know if they were females or males!!! he said he could go and turn them over and see....WTD??! Ma hung up. Since there were no litters from breeders that checked out around here, she got me from Wisconsin! A very good breeder who loves Airedales. I hopes all these puppy mills gets shut down and the peeps put in their own CAGES!
    Ruby ♥

  12. I cannot applaud you more for this post. Having adopted Elsa from a puppy mill rescue, I know all too well the inherent pitfalls with these pets. While I'm grateful to have been able to provide her a safe now, what she had to endure was criminal. Thank you for blooming about this all-important topic!

  13. What a great post! So many people still are not aware of puppy mills, as surprising as that seems to us pet bloggers. I really like that you included quality breeders as an option. JoAnn at Sand Spring amazes me with all she does for her puppies!
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

  14. You have said it ALL, spot on with this! Puppy Mills must be obliterated, they are cruel places with zero regard for the pups and kittens they breed. Either adopt from a shelter, rescue, breed specific rescue, or find a very reliable breeder. Do a little homework! Thanks for writing this Melissa. Sharing.
    Love & Biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them

  15. Now that I've adopted an adult dog, I'm pretty sure that I'll never get another puppy. However, I am positive that I'll NEVER buy a puppy from a puppy mill (again.) I bought my dog Nelly from a pet store, and now that I know better, I'll never support one again! Although I love her dearly, I wish I wouldn't have supported such a cruel industry. She's had health issues and mostly my heart breaks for her mom and all the other dogs that are being mistreated in puppy mills.


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