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The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) recently released its latest “Horrible Hundred” report of puppy mills in the United States. The organization describes the report as “a list of known, problematic puppy breeding and/or puppy brokering facilities.” And they state that “it is not a list of all puppy mills, nor is it a list of the worst puppy mills in the country.”

The breeders and brokers on this list have a proven track record of mistreating animals and violating the laws — which often require only the minimum amount of care, to begin with, and don’t always take emotional well-being into consideration — that were created to help protect animals from abuse and neglect.

This 53-page report proves that the individuals operating these breeding facilities are cutting corners to maximize profits, completely disregarding the humane treatment of animals and neglecting to provide basics such as clean food and water, safe housing and veterinary care.


Missouri and Iowa are known for having a large number of puppy mills, and Minnesota is home to one of the largest puppy mills in the country. But puppy mills are also found in Texas, Pennsylvania, Kentucky and New York, showing that this problem isn’t exclusive to agricultural states of the Midwest.

Uncovering the Hidden Horrors

HSUS Released its ‘Horrible Hundred’ Puppy Mills Report—How Does Your State Rank?


In the 2017 report, Missouri has 19 puppy mills listed, with violations ranging from contaminated food to animals found suffering from open wounds infested with maggots. Pennsylvania has 12 breeders listed, many of which were repeatedly cited for failing to provide veterinary care to dogs. Ohio also has 12 breeders listed, with one of the breeders being noted for having a barn fire that resulted in the death of “an undisclosed number” dogs.

A Tennessee breeder on the list was selling puppies online through puppyfind.com, even after being convicted of 47 counts of animal cruelty. A breeder from Georgia was also listed for selling puppies online after being convicted of 20 counts of animal cruelty. In Massachusetts, a breeder was forcing dogs to live in stacked cages in a basement, and an Arkansas breeder received a violation for a dog suffering from an untreated broken jaw.

Dogs in puppy mills are treated as nothing but a commodity, never knowing a soft bed, toys or a life filled with love.


This is a mere sampling of what the report contains, and it’s important to remember that this information only reflects what has been documented through official inspections or complaints. (Information that is now harder to get due to the removal of animal welfare documents from the USDA’s website in February.) It’s been estimated that there are thousands of puppy mills of all sizes operating in the U.S. If we see this much suffering in documented incidents covering 100 facilities, imagine everything that is going undetected and unreported.

The dogs in puppy mills are suffering every day. They’re forced to live in pain, endure extreme heat and cold in outdoor enclosures, and live in stuffy barns and buildings. The magnitude of the problem is overwhelming to think about, but through the power of people dedicated to education and changing laws, we can help put an end to the suffering.

Putting Puppy Mills Out of Business

HSUS Released its ‘Horrible Hundred’ Puppy Mills Report—How Does Your State Rank?

As the report shows, even breeders with a history of Animal Welfare Act violations can still be allowed to operate, which is why it is so difficult “shut down” commercial breeding operations. That’s why it’s so important to educate consumers about puppy mills and how they’re connected to pet stores online sales.

It might be tempting to “save” a sad-looking puppy from a pet store, but for each puppy purchased, two adult dogs are condemned to a life of pain and misery in a puppy mill.


With the vast majority of pet store puppies coming from puppy mills, over 200 jurisdictions across the U.S. and Canada have enacted ordinances banning the retail sale of commercially bred dogs and cats. It’s an effective way to help stop puppy mills at the consumer level by encouraging people to adopt one of the over six million animals that enter shelters every year. By choosing adoption you not only save a life, you help make puppy mills a thing of the past.

Learn more about puppy mills and pet adoption by checking out these other One Green Planet articles:

All image source: Humane Society of the United States/Facebook  

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0 comments on “Is There a Puppy Mill in Your Neighborhood? This Report Can Tell You”

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john pasqua
11 Months Ago


Arlene Moffa
11 Months Ago

All I ever hear is Put Them Out of Business, but our Government never does anything. These animals are suffering, PLEASE someone step up to the plate and stop these murderers. We let them breed these poor animals and then we get too many dogs and cats so we have to kill them. Cannot someone in our wonderful Government figure this out. I have three rescue dogs but I cannot take any more. I am 83 on a cane. My dogs are all Pedigree and spayed. Someone PLEASE help put these people out of business.

Christine Cotton
11 Months Ago

When is our government going to have some compassion and stop getting paid off by these puppy mill owners and shut these horrid places down once and for all? Our country should be ashamed of itself for its treatment of animals...and our government officials are gutless individuals who are not doing their jobs worried about the next election! Cities across the US have to ban the sale of these animals in stores and on line and make local laws insisting that pet stores carry only shelter pets! It\'s about time they started to really care!

Devon Nullman
06 Jun 2017

What proof do you have that Puppy Mill owners are paying off the Govt ? I agree that these lowlife wretches should be removed from society but the Govt. payoff deal is hard to swallow.

11 Months Ago

why don\'t you list the name and address of each and every one of these monsters who run the puppy mills......I for one would love to know this! and maybe it\'s time to start putting puppy mil owners....down!

06 Jun 2017

@Janice click on the first sentence link "released it\'s horrible hundred report" and you will find the list.

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