Saturday, September 19 has been set aside as Puppy Mill Awareness Day, and events are planned in England, Ireland and across the United States to draw attention to the plight of animals who are victims of puppy mill abuses.
Puppy Mills are a Growing Problem Everywhere
Puppy mills (called puppy farms in some countries) are a growing problem. The profits associated with breeding large numbers of popular dog breeds are too tempting for some unscrupulous and greedy people to resist. The ASPCA defines a puppy mill as a “large-scale commercial dog breeding operation where profit is given priority over the well-being of the dogs.”
The Focus is on Profit at Puppy Mills
Because the focus at puppy mills is on profit, little care is given to producing healthy puppies. Rather, the emphasis is on producing quantities of puppies, regardless of the problems involved. As a result, puppy mill dogs are over-bred and inbred, leading to genetic abnormalities and a range of health problems.
Moreover, breeding dogs are often subjected to lives of constant captivity in small, unsanitary, crowded cages without access to adequate food, water, exercise or veterinary care.
Puppy mill dogs usually end up in pet stores. According to the ASPCA, these dogs are sold through brokers when they are as young as eight weeks of age. Furthermore, the “lineage records of puppy mill dogs are often falsified.” Thus, the unwary consumer is not getting what he or she pays for.
Puppy Mill Laws: Anti-Puppy Mill Legislation
Many states across the USA are attempting, with mixed success, to put legislation in place to prevent some of the worst abuses of puppy mills. And with the assistance of groups like the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) and the Humane Society of the United States and their local affiliates, law enforcement agencies are stepping up raids on puppy mills.
Puppy Mill Awareness Day
Although some progress is being made in the fight against puppy mills, the problem persists. For instance, concerns remain about whether new anti-puppy mill laws can or will be enforced.
And if consumers remain ignorant about the living horror that is a puppy mill, they will continue to inadvertently support puppy mills by purchasing dogs from pet stores. That is why events such as those associated with Puppy Mill Awareness Day are so important. The best way to put puppy mills out of business is to educate the public.