Puppy mills. We’ve heard about the deplorable conditions and have seen the heart-wrenching photos of terrified dogs being rescued from these awful places. We’ve also been told about the connection between puppy mills and pet stores or online sales, and how we need to be careful consumers – or better yet, choose adoption – when looking to add a furry friend to our family. More people are becoming aware of puppy mills, but even with this spreading knowledge the industry continues to thrive, and it will continue to do so until consumers stop buying dogs online and from pet stores.
There are still approximately 10,000 puppy mills operating in the Unites States, where dogs are being subjected to a life filled with nothing but fear, pain, and misery. As with any advocacy effort, education is key in putting an end to this horrific, greed-driven industry. And it’s through education that we can inspire others to advocate on behalf of animals. The passion and dedication of the people behind each of these organizations serve as an inspiration to everyone who hopes to make a difference by taking a stand against puppy mills.
1. The Puppy Mill Project
The Puppy Mill Project works to generate awareness through education, outreach and legislative efforts. Their billboards, along with advertisements on buses and theaters, help educate consumers throughout Chicago and beyond. The organization also holds peaceful demonstrations outside of pet stores who source their puppies from puppy mills. The Puppy Mill Project’s passionate activism and legislative efforts have resulted in the enactment of two ordinances in the state of Illinois banning the retail sale of dogs and cats. Read more about their amazing efforts and how you can get involved by visiting their website.
2. Bailing out Benji
Bailing out Benji’s advocacy efforts focus on the issue of puppy mills in Iowa and Texas. Their outreach programs include speaking at events and staging peaceful pet store demonstrations to educate people about the connection between pet stores and puppy mills. Their founder was one of the advocates featured in the documentary Dog By Dog, which exposes the money trail behind the United States’ puppy mill and agriculture industry. Check out Bailing out Benji’s website for information about the puppy mill crisis and what you can do to help.
3. National Mill Dog Rescue
For almost 10 years, National Mill Dog Rescue has been working to rescue and rehabilitate dogs from puppy mills throughout the United States. They have rescued more than 11,000 dogs and continue to educate the public about the plight of animals trapped in puppy mills. Lily, the beloved companion of their founder, and Harley, a tiny Chihuahua who was rescued from a puppy mill by the organization, served as a heroic voice for puppy mill dogs everywhere. Their legacies live on through National Mill Rescue’s continued efforts to help animals in need.
4. Hearts United for Animals
Hearts United for Animals operates a no-kill animal rescue and sanctuary dedicated to helping animals who have suffered from abuse and neglect. The have rescued over 10, 000 dogs from puppy mills and work to advocate against this horrific industry through education and by promoting adoption. Their print ads and billboards help educate people about the conditions that exist in puppy mills, as well as how pet stores are connected to this greed-driven industry. And they inspire future generations through outreach programs at local schools that help teach children about the humane treatment of animals.
5. Companion Animal Protection Society
Extensive research and undercover investigations across multiple states have helped the Companion Animal Protection Society (CAPS) expose the horrific conditions that exist in puppy mills – and uncover untruths told to customers when inquiring about the origin of a pet store’s puppies. The organization aims to promote the humane treatment of animals through education and legislative efforts, and ensure licensed breeders and brokers stay in compliance with state and federal laws. Their efforts have helped countless animal welfare organizations prosecute animal cruelty and fight against puppy mills in their communities.
Be a Voice for Dogs Suffering in Puppy Mills
Hearts United for Animals/Facebook
We all hope for a day where puppy mills no longer exist. Here are a few simple things you can do to help us get closer to that day.
- Support legislation that improves the lives of animals in your community.
- Participate in peaceful demonstrations that help educate consumers about the pet store/puppy mill connection.
- Educate your friends and family by sharing information about how animals in puppy mills are treated, and why they should always consider adoption.
Lead image source: National Mill Dog Rescue/Facebook