When I rescued Wynston, he was dying. Starving, abused and clinging to life at just 6 months old, he managed to hang in there long enough for me to save him. Wynston was left to die because “he was ugly and wouldn’t sell” according to his abuser, who is now in prison for her cruelty to 76 dogs. Wynston was born in her puppy mill.
Over three years later Wynston models for PetSmart, competes in agility and is a spokesdog for Pro Plan. But this isn’t always the case. Many puppy mill dogs never get out. The mothers who are forced into a life of breeding may never see sun, run on grass or get veterinary attention – all so greedy, monstrous people can make a quick buck.
Quick puppy mill facts:
- 99 percent of all pet store puppies are from puppy mills.
- Approximately 2.5 million puppies are born in puppy mills annually and more than 400,000 breeding stock dogs are imprisoned in these kennels.
- An estimated 3 to 4 million shelter dogs die every year.
This is absurd. 2.5 million puppies are born in mills and sold for money, when there are 3-4 million dogs being euthanized in shelters each year. This has got to stop.
That’s where organizations like The Puppy Mill Project come in. Founded in 2009 by Cari Meyers, TPMP aims to simply spread awareness about the cruelty behind puppy mills, and also the websites and stores that sell these puppies. Currently TPMP offers educational programs, has a rescue fund and raises money to care for dogs who have been rescued from mills.
What’s being done to stop this brutal treatment of dogs?!
Arizona is a great state to live in, in terms of animal rights. Last year, councilmen voted to shut down all pet stores that sell dogs, and BAN the sale of dogs in any pet stores whatsoever. This was a really big deal and a step in the right direction! Shortly after the bill passed, all of the stores such as Puppies n’ Love, were shut down and turned into adoption centers for the AAWL and Arizona Humane Society. More states need to catch on and start doing this. If every single state banned the sale of puppy mill dogs, who would the mill owners sell to? No buyers = no need for puppies = saving lives. Here’s an excerpt from the article explaining the new AZ law:
This is a significant day in animal welfare as this victory opens the door towards greater awareness of shelter pets while also giving them increased outlets for adoption. Additionally, it’s another step towards combating the extreme pet overpopulation crisis in Maricopa County and ultimately saving more lives. Phoenix will join many other cities, including Los Angeles, San Diego, El Paso and Austin that have implemented similar laws.
Recently a large puppy mill operation was shut down in Laveen, Arizona. Over 90 dogs were rescued from the property, which was brought to the authority’s attention when a suspicious neighbor called. That’s all it takes – one phone call saved 90 innocent souls. Unfortunately Arizona is a culprit for irresponsible breeders because many low income people and others who cross the borders illegally breed dogs to make quick money. Our shelters are overrun with pit bulls and Chihuahuas because of this.
What can you do to help?
- Adopt, don’t shop! Don’t buy dogs from a pet store. Don’t buy dogs online – who knows where they are coming from.
- Take the pledge. Pledge to never buy a dog from a pet store, and if you find a store that sells dogs, don’t buy ANYTHING there.
- Be on the look out. If you suspect there is a puppy mill in your area, contact authorities right away. There are many charities and organizations willing to assist in the shut down of mills, including The Puppy Mill Project.
- Spread the word. If you can educate one person on the horrific scene behind pet store puppies, you could save a life.
Will you spread the word about puppy mills?
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