Showing posts with label puppy mills. Show all posts
Showing posts with label puppy mills. Show all posts

Thursday 23 May 2024

Fraudsters labelling puppy mill dogs as rescue dogs. Beware.

"A federal jury awarded nearly $4 million against two men who brokered puppy-milled dogs in violation of California’s pet store sales ban by falsely claiming they were rescued puppies. The lawsuit has driven the men out of the state and resulted in the closure of pet stores that illegally sold the puppies." - Nathan Winograd.
The same issues could just as well apply to cats.

Some detail: a federal jury in San Diego ruled that David Salinas of Cedar Pet Supply and puppy mill brokers Raised and Alicia Rothman misrepresented where the puppies that there were selling had come from. A press release says that Rothman is the sales manager for Select Puppies in Iowa. This business supplies puppy mill puppies to pet stores across the country.

They lied to customers according to the court ruling saying that the puppies came from Maryland-based PetConnect Rescue in order to avoid California's 2019 law which bans the sale of dogs in pet stores unless they are rescue animals.

PetConnect Rescue learned about the fraudulent use of the name in 2020 after California customers contacted them to complain that their puppies were seriously ill.

Court exhibits showed that the animals were labelled as coming from PetConnect Rescue when in fact they came from puppy mills.

The jury awarded damages to PetConnect Rescue of $3.9 million. The organisation said that this represents a portion of the wrongful profits that were gained by the fraudsters in using their organisation's trademark. Nonetheless they were pleased with the jury's verdict.

The Cedar Pet Supply stores were put out of business in California. Although they still operate at several locations in Nevada and Utah. They have three locations in southern Nevada:
  • Las Vegas - 5191 W. Charleston Boulevard, Suite #170
  • Las Vegas - 5105 S. Fort Apache Road, Suite #115
  • Henderson - 1000 W. Sunset Road
Comment: I hope people read this article and my thanks to and Nathan Winograd for bringing this to my attention. People should know when they buy puppies from a pet shop that they were either rescue animals ideally or at least from a certified and registered dog breeder. The same of course applies to cats.

By registered I mean registered with a dog association and the same applies to cats.


P.S. please forgive the occasional typo. These articles are written at breakneck speed using Dragon Dictate. I have to prepare them in around 20 mins.

Saturday 13 January 2024

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania has passed a law banning the retail sale of commercially bred cats

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA, has passed a law (ordinance) which bans the retail sale of commercially bred dogs, cats and rabbits in pet stores. People should understand that pet stores generally acquire animals from Commercial Reading Enterprises (CBEs). A more common term for these businesses is "puppy mills" or "kitten mills". A description which signifies that the animals are churned out with little regard for their health and for ethical breeding standards.

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania has passed a law banning the retail sale of commercially bred cats
Image courtesy Nathan Winograd's newsletter.

Nathan Winograd writes that, "CBEs engage in systematic neglect and abuse of animals, leaving severe emotional and physical scars on the victims. One in four breeding dogs have significant health problems, are more likely to suffer from aggression, and are psychologically and emotionally shut down, compulsively staring at nothing."

He paints a horror story and thankfully under the new law pet shops can partner with rescue organisations if they want to stock animals for sale/adoption.

The law that is mentioned is one which is becoming increasingly commonplace across America in an acceptance that it is unethical to allow pet shops to purchase dogs from abusive breeders when there are many unwanted companion animals at shelters nearby.

This law will help to encourage people to adopt and rescue animals rather than purchase them, to educate the community about dog and cat puppy mills and kitten mills and thirdly to stop the abuse of these animals.

I'm told that the number of CBEs has declined by 30% across America. In Nebraska, the Nebraska Department of Agriculture's records show that 50% of the state's commercial dog and cat breeders have left the business.

Bethlehem City Council unanimously passed the new ordinance last Tuesday. News media reports that there are no current pet sellers affected by the law but it will stop future businesses doing deals with puppy mills and kitten mills. And of course it sends a very strong message to the community.

The ordinance states: "A significant number of dogs and cats sold at pet stores come from large-scale, commercial breeding facilities where the health and welfare of the animals are not adequately provided for.”

A council member, Grace Smith, said: "I know our furry friends in Bethlehem and throughout the communities, as well as their families, are very grateful."

The penalty for a pet store from selling or offering to sell a cat, dog or rabbit will be a $500 dollar fine for every animal offered in violation of the new ordinance.

P.S. please forgive the occasional typo. These articles are written at breakneck speed using Dragon Dictate. I have to prepare them in around 20 mins.

Monday 21 August 2023

America's pet store owners need to be both ethical and businesslike

Entirely understandably, American's pet store owners, take a commercial stance when running their business. They have to in order to make a profit. The world is highly competitive. But my argument is that they need to temper that objective with the objective to ensure that they run their businesses along ethical lines.

Inherently unhealthy Bulldog for sale at Perfect Pets
Inherently unhealthy bulldog for sale at Perfect Pets. Image in public domain.

And I'm referring to the acquisition of cats and dogs from puppy mills to supply their pet stores. No doubt these animals are quite cheap because they are bred in a cheap fashion. They are bred in facilities where there is poor regard to healthcare and socialisation normally. I don't want to brand all puppy mills with the same criticism but they are called "puppy mills" for a reason. They churn out puppies which means the pet stores can buy them cheaply.

It also means that the puppies are going to be popular breeds such as dachshunds and French bulldogs. But both of these dog breeds have health problems particularly the French bulldog which I think is the unhealthiest dog breed of them all with a reduced lifespan as a consequence.

RELATED: 21 genetic diseases inherited by the French bulldog. Are they always in pain?

The moral aspect of acquiring cats and dogs from puppy mills is this. They should be selling rescue dogs and cats from local animal shelters because in that way they will save the lives of some animals scheduled for euthanasia because the shelters are oversubscribed. Sometimes there is not enough space for incoming unwanted animals.

And when an animal shelter does not run a no-kill policy with commitment, you get a situation where you have to euthanise healthy animals. Nathan Winograd would argue that if you run a proper no-kill policy there is hardly ever if ever a need to euthanise healthy animals. But it does require a huge amount of commitment and a smart approach to running a shelter.

RELATED: Pet stores in America are unfeasible unless they buy from puppy mills.

Back to the moral point. In Aurora city the council has passed an ordinance to ban the sale of cats and dogs that have been commercially-bred at puppy mills. Pet stores are going to have to sell rescue animals acquired from animal shelters.

And, as expected, the pet store owners are up in arms. They think the decision by the city's administrators is entirely wrong. They state that many pet store owners are good people running good stores and are not evil and overly commercial in disregarding animal welfare.

I get that. But the moral dimension is still there for all to see. It doesn't matter if the pet store is run really well if they are stocking the outlet with puppy mill cats and dogs. That's because in doing so, as mentioned, they are indirectly encouraging the killing of healthy animals are animal shelters, which is unsupportable.

And it is interesting to note that one pet store owner, Jens Larsen of Denver Perfect Pets in Centennial says that the decision to ban the sale of puppy mill dogs and cats as "wrongheaded". He's outspoken but he should keep his head below the parapet - see below.

He said that not all people are evil or wrong that run pet stores. Correct. And he adds that he has never had any violations or citations against him. He says that puppy mills are often licensed and regulated and therefore to ban supply from these facilities to pet stores as "just wrong".

In some ways he is correct but I have to stress once again the moral dimension. The ethics of the current situation in which puppy mills supply pet stores is unsustainable.

Jen Larsen's Perfect Pets

And interestingly, if you go onto the website you see that his outlet has two stars out of five from 69 reviews. That definitely points to a problem and if you dig around further you will find a news media story on the Denver 7 ABC website with the headline, "Centennial pet shop accused of selling sick dogs to customers". That is a reference to Jen Larsen's pet store.

Some customers are accusing him of selling sick animals. One of them was a dachshund who was bought by a couple and they said that they "went to bed thinking I might wake up to a dead dog. So how could that get any worse?" Just days after bringing her dog home she said that he flopped and rolled and couldn't stand up on his own.

The dog had giardia, a protozoan parasite that most dogs contract from drinking faeces-contaminated water. The condition was not covered by Perfect Pets' insurance. They took the dog to a veterinarian, one that was not suggested by Larsen. As it happens, Larsen partly paid for the veterinary treatment. The dog needed oxygen but survived.

Denver 7 went to check out Perfect Pets with an undercover camera and noticed lethargic dogs and one that had mucus running out of their nose. An employee said that the place was too dusty. But the point here is that Larsen has been accused of selling sick pets and he is the one who is vociferously against the Aurora city ordinance banning the purchase of puppy mill cats and dogs.

And that's the point of this article. Business people owning pet store outlets need to balance the objectives of being ethical and of making a profit. The former puts a check on the latter and the former should underpin all their activities. In doing so, they will run a better business and it will be more profitable in the long run.

Monday 5 December 2022

Abandoned INBRED cats due to Covid and cost-of-living crisis

NEWS AND OPINION: This story tells us how market forces due to the Covid pandemic and now the cost-of-living crisis has shaped what goes on in animal rescue and before that in animal breeding and purchase. Adopting kittens and puppies should never be impacted by market forces.

The story about this form of animal abuse comes from the St Francis Animal Welfare Re-homing shelter in the UK. It is located at Sunnyside Cottage, Mortimer's Lane, Fair Oak, Eastleigh in Hampshire. I know this is a well-reported issue, but it needs to be stressed. Covid has highlighted a poor attitude by many UK citizens to pet ownership.

Boxes of cats and kittens dumped outside the shelter
Boxes of cats and kittens dumped outside the shelter. Image: the shelter.

They say that in the summer of 2022 seven "very neglected and inbred" cats arrived from a kitten mill breeder. These cats had numerous health issues according to the rescue. And cats and kittens have been dumped anonymously outside the shelter as you can see in the photograph supplied by the shelter.

Boxes of cats were found outside the shelter. Three of the cats passed away. Two were kept by the shelter but they had severe heart murmurs.

Surge in demand during Covid leading to kitten mills

The information here then is that during Covid-19 there was a surge in demand for kittens and puppies because people were stuck at home on furlough doing nothing.

This surge in demand resulted in a surge in backstreet breeders in the UK producing kittens or the importation from Eastern Europe of puppies from puppy mills. And now, post-Covid, we have the cost-of-living crisis due to high inflation which in turn is mainly due to Putin's invasion of Ukraine.

Surge in abandonment of kittens and puppies post-Covid and due to high inflation

The cost-of-living crisis has resulted in people giving up their cats and dogs because they can't afford to keep them.

And so, there is a surge in abandoned cats and dogs some of whom find their way to the St Francis Animal Welfare shelter. And they, as you can see, report on inbred kittens which clearly indicates very poor breeding practices with mothers mating with offspring for example and this happening numerous times in uncontrolled breeding or forced breeding with no concern for health.

The manager at the shelter, Helen Shaw, said that they've seen "some of the worst cases of inbreeding". And they've got 40 cats waiting to come into the rescue which is four times the normal number.

Helen rightly says that the Covid-19 pandemic is a major factor in the breeding of the kittens. And the abandonment of kittens and cats is due to the cost-of-living crisis.

Both the adoption and the abandonment are due to impulsive purchasing and impulsive throwing away of sentient creatures due to market forces created by these big events.

Bad breeders and equally bad customers

It's all down to unscrupulous breeders taking advantage of market forces and silly customers buying unhealthy kittens and cats during the Covid lockdowns then deciding to give them up when they return to work, and they can't find the time to look after them. And/or the cost-of-living crisis means they have to give them up because they can't afford to look after them. One of the first things to go is the impulsively purchased cat not the smartphone contract costing £50 per month.

The point of this discussion is that people should not be driven by market forces when adopting cats. They should not make impulsive decisions about the adoption of a cat or dog. This is a considered decision to adopt a companion animal for the life of a companion animal. There are no other considerations. This should not be an impulsive, self-indulgent decision. 

It is a long-term decision and financial provision should be made. People need to research the cost and ensure that they have the money and will do going forward. If not don't adopt.

Rescues pick up the pieces

As usual, it is the rescue centres dotted around the country which pick up the pieces. They are the ones cleaning up the mess caused by the problems created by ill informed, ill-educated frankly silly people who just think they can adopt an animal like they can buy a new television.

It is no wonder that we have animal welfare issues in this country and other countries. The attitude towards sentient creatures is simply not good enough.

My thanks to the Southern Daily Echo.

Featured Post

i hate cats

i hate cats, no i hate f**k**g cats is what some people say when they dislike cats. But they nearly always don't explain why. It appe...

Popular posts