Who We Are, What We Do and Why We Do It
Founded in November of 2011 and incorporated with the state of Connecticut in March, 2012, we are a group of individuals who feel strongly that the general public must be informed about the truth behind pet stores and the puppy mill industry that they profit from. We are volunteers. We are college students, teachers, lawyers, police officers, salespeople, laborers, the self-employed, school children, mothers, fathers, grandparents, sisters, brothers, and friends. We receive no federal or state money and are 100% not-for-profit.
Even with the Internet and the readiness of information at one's fingertips, people still do not understand what a puppy mill is. Some will even argue that they bought a wonderful dog from a pet store, so what's the problem. Or that they only buy dog food at the stores- not the dogs. They do not see the connection between what they are doing and how it supports an industry based on cruelty and greed. They don't understand that the breeder dogs back in Missouri, Kansas and elsewhere are kept for their entire reproductive lives (4-5 years on avearge) in rusted wire cages with a minimum of 6 inches on the sides and tops of their cages. The dogs are routinely exposed to near-freezing temperatures or soaring heat. The smell of feces can be so strong that inspectors cannot enter to do their inspections without putting on gas masks. The dogs have little human contact, little to no veterinary care, no love, and absolutely no quality of life. The female breeder dogs are bred every time they come into heat until at times their uteruses will fall out. When they can no longer reproduce they are either auctioned off for an even worse fate, or simply killed.
Our job is to change this. Through monthly peaceful protests, billboards, websites, social networking, media attention, work with our legislators and old-fashioned word-of-mouth, we work to make people aware of the truth and ultimately pressure the pet store owners to change their ways. (Under CT law, if a pet store owner wants to import a dog for sale from another state, it MUST come from a USDA puppy mill.) Since no reputable breeder will sell its dogs to a pet store, the greedy pet store owners turn to the mills for their supply. Unfortunately, the pet stores resist going humane because they can make such an enormous profit peddling mill dogs. We ask them to promote adoption and promise that like-minded animal lovers and proponents of rescue would support them wholeheartedly.
Recently, members of our group met with our state representitives to offer suggestions for future legislation regarding puppy mills and pet stores. We insist that pet stores make their connections to mills more transparent for consumers. This would include having to make available past inspection reports from the USDA and warning of the inherent medical and genetic risks that are inherent in puppy mill-bred dogs. We also forsee a three day waiting period for people wanting to buy dogs in pet stores. This would allow time for would-be consumers to review the inspection reports and familiarize themselves with the mill that their dog of choice has come from. It would also cut down on impulse buying and lift the burden on our local shelters, seeing as 30% of all dogs bought in pet stores ultimately wind up in shelters. (HSUS)
What You Can Do
Join us! Check out our calendar for our next peaceful protest. You can bring your own sign or use one of ours.
Have an idea for a protest or a fundraiser? Share your ideas with us.
Help us spread awareness. Tell your friends, coworkers, neighbors and children about the puppy mill industry. Tell them to google puppy mills before they buy a dog from a pet store.
Also, since we are entirely self-funded, we are always looking for free answers to our legal questions and questions regarding our upcoming 501(c)3 filing. Know a lawyer who wants to do some pro bono work for a great cause? Give him or her our card. Are you an accountant with a soft spot for animal welfare? We could really use your help.
Also, any people with experience in graphic arts are welcomed to submit ideas for our soon-to-come billboard.
Come one, come all! Together we can put an end to the misery.