Stand Up for Your Pet Store
In many states, shelters and rescues import far more dogs and puppies for adoption each year than all pet stores sell combined. The claim that pet stores are responsible for overpopulation is simply not true… You can also read here about why you should feel confident in purchasing your new puppy from Uncle Bill’s Pet Centers.
The shelter and rescue systems in the United States are importing dogs to meet the public demand. The NAIA site has a story from the Puerto Rico Daily Sun about 107 puppies that died of distemper on their way from the island to the New York area. In fact, as many as 300,000 puppies a year are being imported based on yearly estimates, according to Gale Galland, Veterinarian in the CDC’s Division of Global Migration and Quarantine (Sources: NAIA and ABC News 2006).
Nearly 25% of dogs and cats adopted from shelters had reported health problems one week after adoption and an additional 10% had reported health problems within the 1st month after adoption (source: The Journal of American Veterinarian Medical Association). Shelters do not and are not required to give the extensive incubating, congenital and hereditary support systems that pet stores utilize to keep their puppies healthy.
Pet store puppies receive more veterinary care and oversight during the 1st 12 weeks of age than most other puppies, and therefore have fewer health issues (Source: Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council).
In recent years, pet store puppies had fewer health claims thus prompting pet health insurance carrier DVM/VPI Insurance Group to reduce its premiums for pet store puppies and kittens by as much as 22% (Source: DVM/VPI Insurance Group).
Almost two-thirds of the localities that have adopted pet sale bans since 2010 did not have any active pet stores.
Most of the pictures used in animal rights campaigns are outdated or from unregulated breeders. Pet shops use regulated and inspected breeders or local hobby breeders. Ask to see our records.
Most puppy breeders who sell to pet stores are regulated by the federal government. The U.S. Congress passed the Animal Welfare Act and assigned the USDA responsibility to inspect breeders of four or more intact females. Only USDA licensed, inspected breeders and hobby breeders are even permitted to sell to pet stores (Source: Animal Welfare Act).
All USDA licensed and inspected breeders must have a consulting veterinarian and that veterinarian establishes all health protocols. Additionally, each puppy sold must be accompanied by a State Health Certificate signed by an in-state veterinarian (except for exempt states).
The USDA conducts unannounced/random compliance inspections of their breeders.
Breeders must also comply with applicable local and state laws that protect animals.
Professional dog breeders spend a significant amount of time and money on general maintenance and upkeep on their kennels. Some kennels have full time employees dedicated to the job of maintenance alone.
Professional dog breeders attend regular educational seminars all year. Additionally, professional breeders attend many educational teleconference calls throughout the year to ensure that they are using up to date, state of the art, humane kennel practices.
The average dog breeder has been involved in the industry for 15-30 years, if not longer.
Out of the estimated 10,000 dog breeders in the United States, only about 1,700 of them are USDA licensed and inspected. Pet Stores only purchase their pets from these licensed, regulated breeders and from hobby breeders (Sources: HSUS and USDA).
Pet stores sell as few as 2% of all dogs in the United States (Source: ASPCA).
The most recent credible study on shelter intakes was conducted in 1998 (Source: Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, 1998). This study examined 3,772 relinquished pets form 12 shelters in a six-state area and found:
33.7% came from friends/acquaintances
27.2% came from a breeder or stranger
22.5% came from a shelter
9.3% came in as a stray
3.9% came in from pet stores
Recent statewide attempts to ban pet stores have highlighted the flaws in the rescue system.
(Note from Petland: Since this article has been published, in 2017 Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine has published the largest, newest, most comprehensive study on American shelters ever. We highly recommend reading MSU’s research results here)