Every Dog Deserves A Chance – Even Puppy Mill Dogs

22 11 2010

WARNING: THIS BLOG POST CONTAINS IMAGES THAT MAY BE DISTURBING TO OUR READERS. WE APOLOGIZE FOR THIS, BUT FELT THE PHOTOS NECESSARY TO HELP MAKE OUR POINT ABOUT THIS TOPIC.  PLEASE TAKE CAUTION AS YOU READ ON.

Unless one is living under a stone in a remote village on another continent, it’s impossible to not be aware of the puppy mill problem plaguing our nation today.

In case someone reading this isn’t fully aware of what a puppy mill is – let me enlighten you. Puppy mills, puppy farms, backyard breeding – take your pick – they all mean the same thing: breeding dogs in squalid conditions with an emphasis on profits over the lives and welfare of the dogs. Puppy mills are NOT meccas for dogs where they lounge around all day being fed from silver-lined dog dishes. The dogs who are subjected to these living conditions are piled into kennels – often two or three per kennel – in puddles of urine and piles of their own feces, have never been to a groomer and likely have spent very little, if any, time in a veterinarian’s office.

The sanitary conditions, or lack thereof, are just one of the problems the dogs stuck in these environments endure. In most cases, females are bred during every heat cycle and puppies are more times than not, weaned from the mother well before the eight to ten week recommended weaning time.

Because of the constant breeding and the poor breeding conditions, puppies who are sold from these backyard hell holes often suffer from serious health issues and/or socialization issues. Before the puppies are sold off to pet stores or unsuspecting owners over the Internet who have no idea what the true living conditions for these dogs are, they are cramped in kennels with little to no human contact, no vet care and then transported over long distances, sometimes in poor condition, all of which lead to animal stress and even death.

Those who survive are left to face a different kind of hell – life after the puppy mill, likely stuck in an animal shelter because no one wants to take a chance on “damaged goods.”

We posted a poll recently on whether or not puppy mill dogs could be rehabilitated and discovered that those who read are blog believe unanimously that puppy mill dogs CAN indeed be rehabilitated. With so many who agree that there is hope for these dogs, why are the shelters still full of them?

It’s true, puppy mill dogs are a special breed fraught with special needs thanks to the environment in which they were brought into and ultimately rescued from. Along with the socialization issues, many dogs, as they grow older are subjected to respiratory problems and hereditary problems like hip dysplasia. Many have temperament issues.

So does all of this mean they are doomed to a shortened life in an animal shelter, which we all know presents its own set of problems, only to have their lives ended when their “number comes up?” Why should they be cast off as damaged and unloveable when they didn’t ask to be put in their situation?

Puppy mill dogs, if handled with the right touch, are no different than any other adoptable animal. They simply need a patient touch from someone who can love them for what they are and give them the life of love they desperately want and deserve.

Dogs are natural pleasers and want only to be loved unconditionally – in the same manner they love their families. As the title of this post says: every dog deserves a chance – even those from the puppy mills. They don’t deserve a death sentence simply because of where they were born.

As always, we welcome your comments. This is an important issue and one that needs not to be swept under the rug or for anyone to pretend it doesn’t exist. Please share this post with others. The more dialogue we participate in and the more awareness we raise, the better off these dogs are and the more likely they are to have a chance at a happy and normal life.