…And where not to
So you have decided to get your family a dog. Congratulations! Here are a few places most people look for a new dog and the good and bad points about them.
The Pet Store
This one is easy. Don’t do it. Even if you think you are “Saving” the dog.
Why? Because pet stores have a dirty little secret they would rather you didn’t know. Those cute puppies are raised in abysmal conditions, and every time you buy one, you support an industry that dooms thousands of breeder dogs to lives of suffering. Pet store puppies are raised like livestock in tiny cages. These places are called Puppy Mills.
As soon as a Puppy is purchased at a pet store you have just opened up a spot for the Puppy miller to fill with another dog. The more puppies that are purchased at a pet store the more demand for these puppy mills to turn out more dogs.
Besides the horrors of the puppy mill, there are many other good reasons not to buy a puppy from a pet store:
– You’ll pay more than you will for a healthy, well-adjusted puppy from a reputable breeder
– You’ll get a puppy that is not carefully bred and is likely to have a genetic defect like hip dysplasia or epilepsy
– You’ll get a puppy that hasn’t been carefully socialized and may turn out to have behavior problems
– Due to careless breeding, your puppy may not grow up to look or act anything like its breed
– Because pet store puppies have to poop and pee in their cages, they are very difficult to housebreak
– You will not have the support of a caring and knowledgeable breeder to help you if you have problems with the puppy
The Animal Shelter or Pound
A great choice if you want to save a life! You’ll see plenty of dogs that need homes. The downside is that you sometimes may not have background on the dog’s health and socialization.
Shelters and Rescues do strive to provide as much information as possible but if the dog is picked up after being dumped or is a stray information may not be known about the dogs past.
However Rescues often put their dogs in foster homes for the duration of its stay and a lot of info can be learned about a dog when he is living in a home setting. If you can handle that, a rescue is a good choice.
The Newspaper (or Magazine Ad, kijiji, etc.)
Some good breeders do advertise in the newspaper, but most don’t. If you are looking for an adult dog, you may find a lovely pet that someone is trying to place. Interview them carefully! Go meet the dog and the owners at their house. Some people will want to meet you in a parking lot – not a good idea. You have to think about why they do not want you at their house, is their dog sick and they are not telling you about it. Or are they a puppy mill and they do not want to be found out. This is a tricky way to find a dog and you might find what you get is a lot of heart ache and a truly bad experience.
There are all kinds of breeders. Most do it simply because they have two dogs and want a puppy “just like the parent”, or they do it to “teach the kids about life” or they do it for “the money”. These are all wrong reasons for having puppies. This is simply called a Backyard Breeder.
Don’t patronize these people! Responsible breeders, on the other hand, deserve support. For they have they usually have the experience and the dogs best interest in mind.
There is no reason to breed a dog unless you are a breeder in the true sense of the word.
There are simply too many dogs being put down in shelters with no one to adopt them. People do not see the other side of what breeding a dog does.
A good thing to keep in mind………If you don’t Rescue don’t breed.
According to the American Humane Association, an estimated 9.6 million animals are euthanized in the United States every year.
Out of 1,000 shelters responding to a survey, 56% of dogs and 71% of cats that enter shelters were euthanized.
15% of dogs and 2% of cats were reunited with their owners; 25% of dogs and 24% of cats were adopted. But………..
The majority of these are euthanized at animal shelters, typically after a standard period of time (ranging from several days to several weeks for unclaimed stray animals).