They go by many names; puppy farms, puppy mills, backyard breeders- all names to label the grievous establishments that force dogs to breed their entire lives until they are physically incapable of doing so.
The puppies born through this system are passed over to be sold in pet stores or over the internet through ads. Even though these breeding establishments claim that the puppies are happy and healthy, the reality of these puppy mills is much bleaker. Dogs in puppy mills are essentially cash crops and breeders are out to supply the most commercially viable breed; purebreds or the latest popular mixed breeds.
To paint a picture of what these dogs go through; for one they are greatly malnourished, cramped in overcrowded and soiled cages, and receive little to no veterinary care. The dogs that are terminally ill or aren’t able to reproduce anymore are put down in some of the cruelest ways, namely; drowning, starving, shooting, and even burying the dogs alive.
What’s even more alarming is that more than two million puppies are bred in puppy mills every year and are taken from their mothers at such an early age. The mass-production of puppies into the market doesn’t do any favors for shelters and rescue groups either. Since there are so many puppies, there are fewer homes available to take them in, making the next stop a shelter where their chances of adoption are much slimmer.
I’m sure it’s more apparent that these puppy mills create nothing but a vicious cycle for dogs, and while they are a brooding machine, there are ways you can rage against it:
- When looking to get a new puppy from a breeder ask to see the environment in which the dogs are bred.
- Look for a breeder that doesn’t produce all year long, a waiting list is a good sign.
- Look for a breeder who is open about the puppy’s medical history and is interested know more about your living arrangements.
Finally, don’t SHOP. Please ADOPT.