Puppy Mills: Why You Should Avoid Buying Dogs from Pet Stores

Puppy mills, or puppy farms, are large scale breeding industries that rely on profit over the well-being of the puppies. Unlike traditional dog breeders who sincerely care and give the best up-keep for their dogs, puppy mills create dogs merely for profit and without proper care or genetic quality. Many puppies that come from puppy mills are unhealthy and may contain hereditary defects.

Where Are Puppy Mill Puppies Sold?

Puppy mill puppies are usually sold in pet stores. These puppy stores usually purchase the puppies through a middleman or broker. You can find puppies from these puppy mills being sold as young as 8 weeks of age. These puppies are usually sickly because of being bred in unsanitary, small cages with various types of dogs.

Illnesses Common in Puppy Mill Puppies

It?'s not too uncommon to find a puppy mill puppy with some type of genetic illness or disease. There are usually no safety precautions when breeding these puppies and sick dogs are usually kept in the breeding pools. Some hereditary or congenital conditions that you may find in a puppy mill puppy are as follows:

  • Heart disease
  • Epilepsy
  • Kidney disease
  • Blood disorders
  • Musculoskeletal disorders
  • Deafness
  • Respiratory problems
  • Endocrine disorders
  • Eye problems

Diseases that may be found in puppy mill puppies that you find in common pet stores are as follows:

  • Distemperment
  • Kennel cough
  • Giardia
  • Pneumonia
  • Parvovirus
  • Heartworm
  • Fleas/Ticks
  • Chronic diarrhea
  • Mange
  • Intestinal parasites

Puppy Mill Conditions

The environment at a puppy mill is usually unsanitary, crowded and not enough vet care, food and water to go around. These puppies usually do not get to experience things that most puppies do such as treats, toys and love from an owner. They are often kept in cages with a metal slated floor, toped on top of one another. These metal grated floors usually injure their legs or paws. Many puppy mill puppies have to live their entire life outdoors or indoors without ever having fresh air.

How Often Are Puppies Bred?

Female dogs are bred at any opportunity to make a profit. They usually have very little time to recover from giving birth before they are forced to breed again. Once the females are no longer able to give birth due to illnesses, they are killed. Puppies that have obvious heart problems or other illnesses are also killed. The mother and father of the puppy you see at the pet store will usually never make it out of the puppy mill alive.

How Can You Help Stop Puppy Mills?

Many people are unaware that the cute puppies they see in the windows of the pet store come from these terrible conditions. You can stop this cruelness by refusing to purchase puppies from any pet stores that buy from puppy mills. Never purchase a puppy where you are unable to meet the mother dog. Many online websites and companies will straight out lie about the conditions of their breeding grounds simply to make a profit.

Where Should You Purchase Puppies?

The best place to purchase a puppy is from a breeder that takes the upmost care of the dogs or from your local animal shelter. Although more expensive, pure-bred dogs from local breeders take the time to breed their dogs right to avoid any hereditary illnesses or conditions. Purchasing an animal from your local animal shelter or ASPCA is also a great help to the community. These dogs have usually come from a neglected home or have been abandoned and need an owner who will love and take care of them. Keep this information in mind the next time you decide to purchase a new puppy.

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