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Breeders, shelters best for pet purchase 

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Updated: March 11, 2013 6:19AM



Dear Ollie: Where do pet stores get their puppies?

Sandy, Whiting

Dear Sandy: Virtually all of the puppies sold in pet stores come from puppy mills.

Last week I wrote that Los Angeles, Calif., passed an ordinance banning the retail sale of puppies.

Los Angeles is encouraging people to purchase puppies from reputable breeders or from shelters. They envision pet stores selling rescue dogs, cats and rabbits, thereby reducing the demand for puppies that are mass produced in crude, outdoor breeding farms.

Because the animals are a means of income, expenses are kept down by the “puppy millers” and little consideration is given to the welfare of the pups or their mother.

Considered nothing more than breeding stock, mother dogs are forced to have litters at an early age and kept continually pregnant. Puppies are born in unhealthy conditions, live with their mothers in filth and are transported similarly.

Pups are removed from their mothers at 7 weeks of age, which is two weeks too early. They are sold to brokers who pack them in crates and sold to pet stores.

Puppies can get be infected by contagious
viruses, respiratory ailments, parasites and other conditions caused by neglect and stress.

In addition to selling pups to pet stores, the puppy millers place ads in our local papers and social media outlets.

Oftentimes they work off a cell phone and a manufactured name like Poo Pups Galore. The “nameless telephone voice” may pitch these tiny darlings at $350 to $500 and cash only. If you agree to those terms, the “nameless telephone voice” will bring the little guy to your home. He or she may say the pup is 8 or 9 weeks old and guarantee health, documented by a 24-hour written health guarantee.

Several days later, you may find the new pup has health issues. The pup could have pneumonia.

The “nameless telephone voice” is just one of many exploiters of “designer” pups who deceive a community of people who lead with their hearts rather than their heads.

Never purchase a puppy from someone who doesn’t invite you to see the puppy’s home or breeding place.

Be careful, because those who sell animals out of the back of their vehicles can use many web domain names, addresses and disposable cell phones.

Dear Ollie: I know what happened to the $20 bill your friend’s dog must have swallowed. He couldn’t pass the $20 because it was ... counterfeit!

I haven’t had a dog since I was young, but I have been a life-long dog lover and I enjoy reading your column.

Robert, Hessville

Dear Kathy: I need a little more time to research the question you asked in my Feb. 3 column.

Ollie



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