Thursday, November 20, 2008

Puppy Mills in Canada and Don't be conned

The reason I've decided to write on this subject is so many people aren't aware of when they buy from a Pet Shop, in most cases, they are actually supporting the puppy mills and buying years of problem dogs that have been raised in the most unsanitary and dangerous conditions. It's not uncommon for the pup to be sickly and most likely an inner bred pup.

As you and your family each have your share of holding the puppies and a sales clerk approaches you, your heart has melted and perhaps found your favorite of the bunch.

As you ask the price of the pup and the clerk give you a high fetched price, such as $600.00 or $700.00, you ask the breed of the dog. The clerk tells you the breed and right away you are assuming you are buying a purebred pup for that price.

Unknown to you, papers come with purebreds and as the pup grows, suddenly that tiny lap dog that was suppose to stay within a certain size grows way beyond that. You also notice that as the pups looks changes, often it looks more like another breed rather than what the clerk has told you.

By this time though, you and your family have totally fallen in love with the pup and don't want to take it back.

You notice the pup isn't doing well with training, so you take it to Puppy Obedience classes, but it can't seem to keep up with the others. You assume you have spoilt the pup so much, that now it's your fault the pup is not trainable or the school is being to hard on them and take them out angry with the trainers. In your mind, they just don't understand how high strung your precious baby is. It isn't used to be to being trained in that manner, because your dog is SPECIAL and it probably is as it's neurotic from the way it was bred.

As much love as your family has shown it all the love a puppy would needs, you find the pup either get aggressive with you and starts to snarl or nip or even aggressive especially to children or infants as well as other dogs and trying to house break the pup is a never end of 'accidents'.

Though you are getting frustrated, you did put a huge investment into the pup and you assume your dog is very high strung because it's a purebred and so now you are making all kinds of excuses why your pup, now a dog isn't growing up well mannered as all your friends dogs are. They are everything from mutts to purebreds too, but not having any of the problems you are. They tell you they are used to being the BOSS in the family and have to hide the dog away when people come over.

When you ask if they socialize their dog, they say they can't because it wants to fight every dog they have contact with, so to avoid the embarrassment, they take their dogs out when no other dogs are around. 

In many cases, the neighbours have complained about the constant barking of your dog that is holding you prisoner in your own home because you can't leave your place with it without a scene and if you do, the complaints come in and you find your place a disaster with dog feces, pee and destroyed furniture. Oh, but it loves you so much that it can't bare to be without you, you convince yourself.

Not once do you think your dog has mental problems that think most inner bred dogs do. You're basically a first time owner and you blame all the dogs problems on yourself, after all, with a purebred, the blue blood it comes from must make it need extra care that other dogs don't require.

Do they consider the Dog Shows where purebreds have been trained to strut their stuff and have to stand, walk and prance around the ring under strict scrutiny of judges? Why don't these dogs have the same problems?

As they grow older, they find their beloved has more health problems and they pay out more money on getting the well more than they had paid for them several times over.

Please, before you and your family decide to get a dog, especially first time owners, do your homework prior to making that decision. There are Pet Stores that have cats and dogs that aren't sold in the stores and only displayed there. These animals are usually shelter animals and to be able to adopt them, you go through the Humane Society or Animal Aid Rescue and go through the adoption program to see if you and the animal are right for each other.

They won't cost you $600 or $700 to buy, but they will already have their shots and the fee's for having them fixed are included if too young or already to go.

If you MUST have a purebred, check out your local breeders and ask for their credentials and ask around about them. The reputable ones don't want their names tarnished and they will take care to have you thoroughly checked prior to you even seeing their animals. You will receive papers of their lineage with pedigree papers to go with them.


Puppy Mills in Canada

Dogs at a puppy mill, crowded into cages.

With hundreds of thousands of dogs born into puppy mills each year, Canada has become a haven for the puppy mill industry—and for unimaginable cruelty against our best friends.

It’s all about profit.

A puppy mill is a breeding operation in which puppies are mass-produced in substandard conditions. The goal is to produce as many puppies as possible with minimal cost to—and maximum financial gain for—the operator. The puppy mill industry has grown exponentially in Canada, and it is now a multimillion dollar business in this country.

Puppy mills cannot meet the needs of a dog. These dogs live in insufficient housing that are overcrowded with poor sanitation, and are under-fed and denied proper veterinary care. The majority of the breeding females spend their entire lives in small, filthy cages without exercise, love or human contact. They are bred continually until their tired, worn bodies finally give out and they can no longer produce enough puppies (usually at four to six years of age.) At this point, they are no longer deemed profitable and are simply killed, as are unsold male dogs

While many are located in Quebec, puppy mills operate in many other provinces, from coast to coast in Canada. Notably, at least 90 percent of puppies sold in pet stores in Canada come from puppy mills. Puppy mill pups are advertised in local newspapers and sold through the Internet, at flea markets, or directly from the mill. Generally, visitors are not allowed inside the facility to see the conditions in which the dogs are kept.

Quebec is Canada’s puppy mill centre.

Although they exist all over Canada, a large portion of Canada’s puppy mills can be found in the province of Quebec due to its particularly poor legislation and enforcement surrounding commercial dog breeding operations. The result has been the creation of up to 2200 puppy mills in this province. Half the dogs bred in Quebec are sold outside the province to pet stores and wholesalers across Canada and (until recently) the US. Furthermore, the Quebec government provides very little funding to animal cruelty investigations compared to other provinces.

Breeding Disease and Heartache

Puppy mill breeders allow over-breeding and inbreeding to occur. Most puppies have, or will develop, genetic defects and/or other health problems sometime in their lives as a result of poor breeding practices and unsanitary conditions at the puppy mill. They often have behavioural and temperament problems as well, resulting from a complete lack of socialization with humans or other dogs.

In May 2008, the US government placed a ban on imports from foreign puppy mills for commercial sale. This will likely have a great impact on the puppy mill industry in Canada, since the US has been a major market for this industry up until now.

What We’re Doing

HSI Canada and our US affiliate, the Humane Society of the United States, are fighting puppy mills on several fronts. From conducting investigations, to rescuing dogs from cruel puppy mills, to lobbying for stronger provincial and , we’ve met with some success—but there is a long way to go and we won't stop until Canada’s puppy mills are shut down for good. Join us in the fight—with your help, we will succeed!

Write to your Member of Parliament to ask for better enforcement of laws and increased penalties to stop puppy mills.

What You Can Do

  • Write to your Member of Parliament to ask for better enforcement of laws and increased penalties to stop puppy mills.
  • Sign our pledge declaring your support for a national ban on puppy mills and stronger laws for animal protection.
  • Live in Québec? Write to your provincial representative and Premier Jean Charest to demand better enforcement and funding of the provincial animal welfare law. Then, download and circulate our petition[PDF] addressed to the National Assembly. en français [PDF]
  • Donate to help end puppy mill cruelty.

Expert Opinion


Video: Cruelty in Canada

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