Puppy mills are facilities where dogs are bred for profit. Sadly, these institutions do not regard the well-being or needs of the dogs in their care. To maximize profit, they cut corners or outrightly act irresponsibly in more ways than one that makes their actions morally disturbing.
This article will try to outline reasons why puppy mills are unethical by bringing forth facts regarding happenings behind the scene in most puppy mills and the resultant consequences of these practices.
So let’s jump right in.
Substandard living conditions
The conditions in which these dogs are live is deplorable at best and somewhat criminal.
Do you know how the dogs are kept?
The dogs are housed in little cages that are unkempt and dirty, in poorly lit buildings. Sometimes these crates are stacked upon each other resulting in feces falling into the dogs in a lower cage.
That’s not all
Because the operation thrives in numbers, rather than quality, most puppy mills are crowded with more than 100 dogs living in a small space.
There are also reports that at some establishments, dogs are tethered on trees at the mercies of the elements.
All these factors put together makes the dogs more susceptible to infections and allergies. Matted fur, fleas, putrid odor, irritated skin, eyes, and ears are some of the conditions these dogs battle with.
When the puppies are eventually sold to brokers, the dogs travel in miserable conditions across long distances without rest and proper nutrition leading to the death of some of the puppies.
Lack of veterinary care
Operators of puppy mills rarely get veterinary care for the dogs. They care more about making more profit and see healthcare as a luxury they can’t afford.
So what do they do instead?
More like what they don’t do: the dogs do not get vaccinated; neither do they receive other preventive medications that are needed for optimal health and wellbeing.
And when the dogs develop health problems like infections and wounds they are left untreated.
Puppy mills operators do not feed their dogs properly. The dogs are underfed and malnourished. The quality of the food is poor: including maggot infested meals, And stale rations. Poorly prepared feed are very much in play with puppy mills.
It is disheartening to know that many dogs suffer from starvation and thirst.
It is not uncommon to find puppies from puppy mills doing poorly healthwise. This is tied to horrible breeding condition, poor living environment, lack of adequate immunizations, and resultant genetic defects from breeding dogs not fit for breeding that characterize puppy mills.
So an unsuspecting individual buys a cute looking puppy that has found its way to the pet store, only to be faced with the challenge of caring for a sick pet. That in itself is unfair and undeserving.
In many cases, the puppies succumb to death despite veterinary intervention, costing the owners money and time.
Horrifying breeding practices
Best breeding practices dictate that female dogs be bred just once a year and retired from breeding when they are 5 or 6 years old.
Unfortunately, puppy mills do not follow these principles. Females are bred twice a year, and when they can’t whelp any further, they are killed! They are shot dead in most cases and not responsibly euthanized.
Despite the rigors of been pregnant non-stop, the females do not receive veterinary care during or after whelping.
Believe it or not, many puppy mills claim to sell “purebred” dogs; unfortunately, that claim is a big lie.
Deprived companionship and socialization
In puppy mills, dogs don’t have play time; they are caged continuously. Therefore they do not get to interact with humans or exercise leading to behavioral problems as they grow.
The conditions listed above are inhumane. As caregivers, owners and operators of puppy mills are expected to provide the care and support needed for their dogs to live happy and healthy lives. Therefore indulging or participating in the practices outlined above is morally not correct- simply unethical!