While the problems of puppy mills, puppy brokers and irresponsible breeders continue, we must stress the importance of buying a puppy/dog from ethical, responsible breeders in order to avoid both the health and temperament problems associated with dogs purchased or adopted from poor sources.
Everyone selling puppies proclaims himself or herself to be a responsible breeder, even those selling puppies from puppy mills! It is up to you, the buyer, to determine whether or not someone trying to sell you a puppy is a responsible breeder.
You, as a well-educated consumer, are the best weapon against puppy mills' indiscriminate breeding, animal neglect and abuse. To help you, future dog owner, recognize and avoid purchasing your puppy or dog from a puppy mill, please review the following series of articles. beginning with : "How To Recognize a Puppy Mill: Don't be fooled by marketing: learn to spot poorly reared high-priced pups," which originally appeared in the Madison Pet Gazette as a three-part series in the February, March, and April 1998 issues and are now archived at the Badger Kennel Club, Inc. of Madison, Wisconsin web site.
Puppy Mills--You Can Help!
Reprinted from Sheltie International, Feb/Mar 1992, written by Gina Grissom
All of us have seen television coverage on puppy mills and are aware of the plight of dogs used as breeders in those "facilities". I know that most of you are as horrified as I am and want to see these places shut down, however, we know that as long as someone is making money, they will continue to operate.
The only way puppy mills will stop is if no one buys their puppies, which means that pet stores would have to stop carrying puppies. None of us buy our puppies in pet stores, and most of us warn other people from doing so too. But pet stores don't make as much money off of puppies as they do off of the supplies. If you would like to help put puppy mills out of business, why don't you do what I am doing.
Don't buy any supplies from a store that sells dogs, even if you have to drive a little father or pay a little more. If you currently buy from such a store, tell the owner that until he stops selling dogs, you will not buy any supplies there, and you are also going to ask other people not to buy at his store.
Do ask your neighbors, relatives, friends, etc. to think about what they are doing when they buy supplies from stores that sell dogs, ask them to consider not buying.
If enough people refuse to buy supplies from stores that sell puppies, those stores will go out of business--puppy mills cannot operate if pet stores don't carry their puppies.
All of the legislation in the world will not put puppy mills out of business, but we can if we are willing to take the time to spread this message.
Where can I find a Bichon Frise?
Locating responsible breeders and rescue contacts can be difficult. You probably won't see their ads in the local newspaper, nor will you see their puppies at a pet store. But don't get discouraged, you've already come a long way!
All-breed clubs can be an excellent resource for referrals to responsible breeders and rescue contacts. Other dog owners (of the breed you're fancying), veterinarians, and reputable purebred dog registries, such as the American Kennel Club (AKC) can also be good starting points. The AKC site offers an easy-to-use online breeder referral tool.
They also have an AKC events search tool to help you to locate events in your area. Visit a dog show or two or three and talk to the exhibitors there to help you to locate a quality breeder.
And don't forget to use their Club search tool to find local clubs that can assist you in finding a breeder, training your dog, and having fun!
Learn more about Bichons and puppy mills:
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