I have always voiced my opinions about puppy mills and dog shelters. Our first dog that Seth and I got together, was from the Utah Humane Society. Thunder passed a few weeks ago, you can read my blog post about him and his life here. He was an old dog when we got him, about seven years old. We loved that he got a second chance and that he got to be an important part of our family. Because of that experience, we really strongly believe in adopting pets, rather than shopping for them.
I know a lot of people, who are in favor of puppy mills, use the argument that they want a specific breed of dog, and they want to have the dog for its whole life. That’s a valid argument. However, it’s a weak argument. Normally, when I write about something controversial, I like to say that this is my opinion but I’m not taking sides. But I’m taking sides here.
Puppy mills(like the puppy barn, in American Fork) don’t take proper care of the pets they breed. There’s a reason they’re called “mills”. The breeding process is rarely ethical, puppies aren’t taken care of, and statistically, most puppies end up in a shelter at some point. A lot of puppies from mills also die from parvovirus or parasites, and those symptoms don’t show up until they’ve already been purchased and it’s too late. You’ll never get a refund from that and it’s hard to recover from that sort of emotional loss.
Back to my argument about wanting to get a specific breed of dog as a puppy so your its only owner. It’s entirely possible to adopt puppies. Even puppies of specific breeds. Does it take more work? Yes. Puppies are surrendered often to shelters. It’s honestly as easy as subscribing to the email lists for all of your local shelters, and keeping an eye on craigslist(and ksl, if you’re in the utah area). I know someone that went through a breeder to get a Cane Corso. It was really damn expensive. When we started looking around for a new dog a few weeks ago, we came across a cane corso. Under 1 year old. For less than $100.
All I’m saying is, you can absolutely find a puppy in the breed that you want, without having to give money to a puppy mill.
As long as people continue to buy from puppy mills, though, they’ll continue to breed and mistreat more and more dogs. When a dog gets too old to be in the puppy mill, they’re often surrendered to shelters. So, no, they’re not going to be euthanized if you don’t succumb to the temptation to shop rather than adopt. Plus, shopping for a puppy is going to cost you well over $1000. You could adopt like, 10 dogs for that.