When talking to someone yesterday about their desire to get a puppy, they mentioned that they had visited a pet store several times but couldn’t find their desired breed in the right color. WAIT A SECOND. Do you see something wrong with the above sentence? Did he say… pet store??  When I asked him if he had heard about puppy mills, he said no! I am amazed at the number of people that still have no clue as to what a puppy mill is or why they should avoid pet stores when purchasing a puppy.

Pet stores (for the vast majority) get their puppies from puppy mills: mass breeding farms that are slowly but surely becoming illegal in all states. They are absolutely horrendous places where dogs are never walked or touched, but spend every day of every year in a metal crate stacked on top of another metal crate. Their feet become deformed and the pee and poo from the dog above drips down and covers them in filth. These are not responsible breeding locations. The females are mated at every opportunity (several times a year) without regard for maintaining bloodlines or avoiding genetic diseases. Dogs from pet stores are prone to very serious genetic health conditions such as ear and eye problems, bad joints, luxating patella, skin issues, and metal limitations (unable to be potty trained, hyperactive, extreme barking, spinning in circles, and unable to learn basic commands).

Some people interpret this information to mean that they should run out to the nearest pet store and purchase as many puppies as they can to “rescue” them from such a horrible past. This is not the proper way to help stop this nasty and immoral cycle becauase pet stores regard selling puppies as a business. By purchasing a puppy from a pet store you are supporting the puppy mill industry–they will just go out and buy more.

The humane society is actively working to expose and shut-down mass puppy breeding facilities and return dogs to their rightful place in society–a place where they can be cherished and held in honor to respect true bloodlines not to be made commercial and sold as livestock. The humane society also works to expose pet stores who get their puppies from puppy mills. Petland Pet Stores are very popular across the US and get their pups from puppy mills. You can actually visit the humane society website here and check the pet stores in your area to see where they get their pups. There’s a quick video to explain the severity of puppy mills and what you can do to help on the humane society’s website:

http://www.humanesociety.org/issues/puppy_mills/

If you are considering adding a puppy to your life–congratulations! Your life will truly be changed for the better by your addition. But instead of going to a pet store, please first check out the local shelters or rescue groups in your area. http://www.petfinder.com is  an amazing website to find dogs near your home that are currently in shelters. You can search by location, breed, size, and age so you will be sure to find the pup of your dreams! If you are adamant to get a puppy from a breeder, please find a responsible breeder who will let you visit the parents of your puppy and see how they are raised and what their temperament is like. Lead your dog!

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