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pet stores

The majority of puppies sold in pet stores come from puppy mills. A puppy mill is a factory farm type facility that is only interested in producing as many puppies as possible for profit, without considering the health or well being of the puppies or the puppies' parents. Breeding dogs are often kept in cages their entire lives, churning out litter after litter, and are not given the care needed in order to maintain physical and mental health.

Please do your research before purchasing a puppy. Read our checklist on Choosing the Right Puppy and Finding a Good Breeder for more questions you should ask when interviewing breeders and selecting your new puppy.

puppy care
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about puppy mill puppies

Most puppies sold in pet stores come from puppy mills -- factory-like facilities, churning out purebred puppies in large numbers. Puppy mills look to make a profit; commonly disregard the dog's physical and emotional health; and do not adhere to sound breeding practices. The result is often sick or dying puppies who suffer from genetic, mental and physical health problems that are not always immediately apparent to the consumer. Thousands of "breeder" dogs live a miserable existence in horrific conditions without hope of ever being part of a family.

the puppy mill – pet store connection

Most pet stores are adamant that they do not support puppy mills and that the dogs they sell are strictly from "reputable breeders." However, many people who purchase their puppy from a pet store can end up with a sick or dying animal. With some research, they will learn their puppy was indeed from a puppy mill. For those who were lucky enough to purchase a healthy dog, it is important to keep in mind that purchasing that dog makes room for more puppy mill dogs raised in horrendous conditions. Every puppy mill dog purchased ensures that the industry continues to thrive.

Reprinted by permission of The Humane Society of the United States.

puppy mill brokers posing as breeders

Often times puppy brokers will purchase puppies from a puppy mill, then resell them via websites or newspaper ads, posing as breeders or families that just happen to have a litter of puppies. Their stories are rehearsed and thoroughly thought out, and initially it can be hard to tell the difference between a reputable breeder and a puppy broker.

In order to avoid unknowingly purchasing a puppy mill dog, visit the breeder in person and meet the puppies and the parents of the puppy. Ask to see where the dogs are kept and take note of the conditions and how many dogs, puppies and different breeds are on the premises. Ask for a copy of the pedigree, then go home and research the kennel names on the pedigree. A simple google search often reveals a puppy mill in the puppy's background. If a breeder pressures you to leave with a puppy rather than holding one for you for 24 hours, or if they refuse to give you a copy of the pedigree, move on to another breeder.

recognizing backyard breeders

If the breeder doesn't participate in any type of conformation, agility, obedience, or other club-sponsored events and does not test the parents for common genetic diseases prior to breeding, they are likely a puppy mill, puppy broker, or "backyard breeder". Backyard breeders often obtain cheap dogs that may have come from puppy mills, then randomly breed them for profit, disregarding the importance of health and breed standards. Backyard breeders often neglect their dogs and many are kept in poor living conditions, chained up or kenneled for most of their lives.

For more information on recognizing a good breeder, before purchasing a puppy visit our page on Finding a Good Breeder >


about puppy mills information on puppy mills.
stoppuppymills.org information on the connection between pet stores and puppy mills.

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