What You Can Do To Fight Puppy Mills
Here are some practical things you can do to fight the spread of puppy mills:
Sign A Petition
There are many online petitions you can sign regarding the prevention of puppy mills.
Write A Letter
Write to your local government representative and ask for better enforcement of laws and increased penalties to stop puppy mills.
Join Or Donate
Join an organization dedicated to a national ban on puppy mills and stronger laws for animal protection. Donations to these organizations will also help end puppy mill cruelty.
And Most Importantly...
To help eliminate the income that puppy mills continually generate for their owners, follow the guidelines below to be sure you are not purchasing one of their puppies:
Do not - under any circumstances - buy a dog from a pet shop.
Find a reputable breeder. Check with the better business bureau and ask the breeder for proof of membership in dog-related organizations.
Ask to see documentation on health clearances. Puppy mills do no spend the time and money screening for potential health problems.
If the dog has been shown, ask to see the show record of the puppy. Puppy mills do not bother to show their dogs because of the costs involved and because their dogs are typically not sound enough to show, or the dogs are not purebred and, therefore, not recognized by the AKC or CKC.
Ask to see the puppy kennels - obviously a puppy miller does not want you to see where their dogs are raised.
Ask to see both parents of the puppy, or get a contact number for the owner of the sire.
Ask to see the dog's registration papers.
Ask about their puppy purchase application.
Consider visiting your local animal shelter or rescue organization and adopting a dog in need of a good home.
Remember, the only effective way to free these dogs from the miserable conditions of these below-standard puppy mills is to eliminate the demand for their puppies! When people stop buying puppies in pet stores, the puppy mills will eventually go out of business, and the misery may finally end.
Report any commercial breeder you believe to be unlicensed. In addition, contact the nearest Humane Society and/or ASPCA and talk to someone in authority - these groups also have the authority to investigate and stop puppy mills.
Your state or province should have an agency or department that also licenses and monitors breeders. Generally you can get this information in the government section of your phone book or from listings at your local library. Although no one person can stop a puppy mill alone, it is very helpful to have as much information as possible when/if you inform officials about one. First-hand experience is usually the most credible - Have you or someone you know been to this puppy mill? Do you know how many animals are there? Photos of the puppy mill would also help investigators immensely (but don't put yourself in harm's way to obtain them). Whether you have evidence or not, any reliable tip will be appreciated by the authorities.
Remember - it can take a while to get an investigation going, so you have to be patient. Sometimes the authorities can move very quickly, but generally it takes time to build their cases and get the evidence and the warrants needed. If there are abused or neglected animals, the breeders will ultimately be prosecuted under Animal Welfare laws.
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