seva in action
the kennel >>
BY ELLEN LAVINTHAL
Adopt, don't shop:
that doggie in the window may have
been raised in a puppy mill.
ho’s that doggie in the window?
This phrase once elicited images
of a cute healthy puppy for sale at the
local pet shop. Today, with half a million dogs and cats being euthanized in
California shelters annually while the
breeding facilities known as puppy mills
are more of a phenomenon than ever, the
story behind the scenes is not so sweet.
A Humane Society study revealed that
currently 99% of the dogs sold in pet
shops were born in puppy mills. True to
the name, these large-scale, commercial
breeding operations operate with one
sole purpose in mind: to mass produce
puppies for sale.
The problem is that puppy mills have
been repeatedly cited and exposed in undercover investigations as inhumane and
sub-standard breeding facilities. Many
of these mills subject dogs to cruel living
conditions including cramped cages with
insufficient food and water, extreme
overcrowding, filth, lack of proper medical care and nonexistent exercise. Dogs
are given very little protection from the
elements, leaving them to spend days
and nights on end freezing or sweltering.
What is even more shocking is that the
Humane Society also estimates that as
many as 10,000 puppy mills may be in
operation across the U.S.
It is unthinkable to me that man’s best
friend would live its life this way and
unfathomable that these unconditionally
loving, sentient beings should be forced
to live without ever touching the grass
or feeling the warmth of a man’s touch.
Such staggering euthanasia numbers
reflect that there is a serious problem
with supply and demand. Sadly, we are
killing scores of dogs in our nation’s