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The Misunderstood Puppy Mill


Courtesy of VotersForAnimals

Surprisingly, there are many in the community who do not believe that the puppy mills of Iowa and other states are as inhumane as what animal rights activists say they are.

 In a recent editorial by the Des Moines Register, a reporter stated that there is more that can be done to save the puppies and dogs involved in these money only focused businesses.  Federal government regulates these mills now but legislature is looking at giving inspectors at the the state level the authority to assist with the inspections.

The response to the article is surprising when it would seem that it is so obvious how awful these puppy mill operations are.  Readers wrote in saying that there really is not a problem with puppy mills.  Instead it is the press making a big deal out of something that is not really a problem.  One reader stated that if puppy mills were as bad as what activists say they are, then why have so many been in business for so long?

There seems to be a misunderstanding about puppy mill operations in the community.  Puppy mills are not the same as breeders.  Puppy mills are breeding facilities that operate under substandard conditions.  Puppy mills are operated on the premise of making a profit only.  The humane care and treatment of the animals is not a priority.  Typically puppy mills will offer a variety of breeds rather than a specific breed or two.  The more breeds that the mill has to offer, the more profit the mill can make.

There are several problems with puppy mills.  The care, treatment, and breeding methods of the adult dogs are horrendous.  Cleanliness and healthcare are not maintained to meet even minimum qualitfications.  The dogs are caged and allowed out only to be bred with other dogs.  The dogs live in urine and feces which alone is a huge concern.

The puppies receive a little better treatment than the parent dogs but reside in cages as well.  Puppy mills that sell to the public will provide the puppies with their initial vaccines so that the appearance of some healthcare is provided.

Breeders are a completely different operation.  Yes breeders do make a very good profit from the sale of the puppies but more often than not, the dogs and puppies are taken care of at a higher standard than puppy mills. Breeders often use the family pets to breed litters of puppies.  The parent dogs are healthier and receive appropriate healthcare and nutrition.  The puppies are cared for and socialized in a healthier and safer environment.  (There is always the chance of bumping into a breeder, however, that operates closer to a puppy mill.)

Puppy mills do stay in business a lot longer than what they should based on the inhumanity of their operations.  The reason?  There are several.  One reason is that time is not invested by adoptive families to research where they are getting the puppies from.  Another mistake made by the public is that when they buy from the puppy mill, they are are "rescuing" the puppy.  Wrong.  Doing that actually funds the puppy mill and allows the business to continue operations.

Despite all of the public messages and attempts to educate the community about the puppy mills, it would appear that more education and information is needed to help the stop of puppy mills.


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