“Just before Sophie passed away, Oprah—and thousands of drivers—saw a billboard just off the Kennedy Expressway in Chicago that read, “Oprah: Do a show on puppy mills. The dogs need you.” By finally getting the attention of Oprah Winfrey the plight of the puppy mill dogs finally gained the spotlight these animals so badly needed. Her investigative show opened the eyes of the people to the evils of puppy mills and how the practice must be stopped.
Puppy Mills vs. Professional Kennels
However, one should not get professional dog kennels mixed up with puppy farms as these 2 are as different as night and day. Puppy mills churn out puppies like bred rabbits due to the income-generating benefits of the practice. The dogs are treated in the worst possible conditions and often die in captivity. Dog Kennels on the other hand breed dogs for a different purpose. That of educating the public about how to care for these beloved pets and although money is made from the sale of the dogs, these animals are spoiled rotten so to speak. They are treated more like human babies rather than the wild animal treatment they would get in a puppy mill.
What Happens In A Puppy Mill?
In order to understand what happens within the confines of a puppy mill, one has to view it as a 24-hour puppy-producing factory. As such, the dogs are mere machines that churn out a product for consumption. They are kept in the confines of ill-kept cages for their whole lives and do not receive any nurturing from their human handlers nor contact with their fellow dogs. It is like being kept in a prison cell where they live and die at the mercy of Mother Nature. These are the reasons why puppy mill dogs are often sick and with short life spans.
Why Aren’t Puppy Mills Outlawed?
Puppy mills should be outlawed. But somehow, these operations manage to proliferate due to the careless way people procure their pet dogs. Typically, the products of puppy mills are sold in pet stores and over the internet. Yes, designer dogs that come at such a hefty price will most often come from such places. Most pet stores do not have the proper paperwork for their puppies. When quizzed, the store owners will most often lie instead of admitting to the true origins of their puppies. This is why store-bought puppies are often sickly and die in infancy. The only way to dismantle the puppy mill industry is to not patronize their sales. Instead of buying your puppy of unknown origin from a pet store, go to your local humane society and purchase one there.
Are There Any Federal Laws That Regulate Puppy Mills?
There are actually laws that try to protect all animals. The most notable is the Animal Welfare Act which was passed in 1996. This law regulates the commercial sale of all animals and is enforced by the United States Department of Agriculture. Under this law, the USDA requires breeders to get a license and adhere to a specific set of regulations pertaining to puppy treatment and welfare.
In the end, puppy mills continue to exist because people patronize them. Therefore it is very important that people understand and become educated, no, aware, of the puppy mill situation and why these dogs, should be saved from them and the mills shut down.
Bibliography / References
“Ask Joyce: Why Aren’t Puppy Mills Outlawed?”. Animal Legal Defense Fund. N.A. 2009. Web.
“Beyond Puppy Lemon Laws: Outlawing Puppy Mills”. LemonJustice. 2008. Web.
“FAQs: Stop Puppy Mills”. The Humane Society Of The United States. 2008. Web.
“The Difference Between Puppy Mills and Professional Kennels”. Associated Content. 2007. Web.
“Investigating Puppy Mills”. Oprah.com. 2009. Web.