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Mill Kill (part two of two)

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Laws against animal cruelty such as anti-abuse laws, condition laws, and laws pertaining to supplying sufficient food and nutrients, somewhat aid in the ongoing pursuit of ending puppy mills, yet do not manage to completely outlaw puppy mills, due to exceptions and lack of interest from the public and the government. Anti-abuse laws and condition laws are clearly present in the Animal Welfare Act (AWA), a federal law that includes regulation of the treatment of animals in puppy mills. The issue regarding this law is the poor enforcement, numerous loopholes, and lack of protection it offers (“Puppy Mills FAQ”). The AWA only requires the minimal amount of care, enough to keep the animals alive. Applying only to the large scale breeding facilities, the AWA is unable to outlaw organizations that conduct direct sales through the Internet or other sources, and do not fall under any legal regulations. When it comes to obedience of the law, many breeders manage to get away with numerous violations, receiving no penalty. The AWA requires regular inspection, but if breeders do not meet the required standards, often no consequence is given (“Laws that Protect Dogs in Puppy Mills”). Another reason that the anti-cruelty laws, passed by all 50 states, are not preventing puppy mills, is through the loopholes that the breeders manage to uncover. As long as puppy mill dogs are provided with the necessities of survival, breeders are not bothered by the government, without evidence of complaint. Once an illegal mill is suspected, authorities will investigate, although it is rare that mills are ever discovered due to their intentional secrecy in sales. By law, all animals are required to be provided with the basics of survival, such as food and nutrients, and it is illegal to restrain them from such necessities. Again, these laws fail to close puppy mills because there is no way for authorities, who care little about puppy sales, to uncover the truth behind the cruelty of the mills, without credible evidence. Every issue draws back to the same point: public support. Public support is necessary to end puppy mills, even when the government is involved. If the public were more attentive to the surrounding, inhumane animal cruelty, and if the government showed more interest towards the treatment of animals, mills could be uncovered and breeders arrested, forever ending the strife of vulnerable puppy mill victims.



From the public point of view, there are two clear-cut sides on the argument for legislation against puppy mills: those who agree with puppy mills and those who want these puppy factories outlawed immediately. Surprisingly, many Americans disagree with any government involvement pertaining to puppy mills. It seems as though no person could be selfish enough to put a helpless animal through torture for their own needs, but some find puppy mill investigations to be an irritating and unnecessary procedure. Licensed dog breeders who are treating their dogs with care do not want to deal with constant inspections from suspecting authorities. Other breeders believe that it is not a large enough issue to involve the government, though their opinions are far from credible since these breeders may easily be the ones in charge of the mills (Belz 1). The concern of selling puppy mill dogs at pet stores has also evolved into a legal issue. Although many pet stores purchase their animals from mills, just as many receive animals from reputable breeders. It would be unjust to group all stores together and blame them for supporting mills, when a number of pet stores have refused to purchase any animals from unknown breeding facilities (“E.V Pet Stores Pledge to Avoid Puppy Mills”). From another standpoint, many customers purchasing purebred mill dogs would rather have lower priced purebreds for themselves, than save the lives of millions of animals. If puppy mills were to shutdown, it would be an inconvenience because purebred dog supply would drastically decrease. Puppy mills are the only way for some consumers to purchase the dogs that they desire, and they find it ridiculous to view animal’s needs or rights above human interests (“The Rights of Animals”). Puppy mill opponents, the animal activists who are educated on the truth behind the lies, view mills as unimaginably brutal hellholes where animals are forced into the pain of over reproduction. They see past human selfish desires and view those who support mills as horrendous, free of all morals, and created of cruelty (“The Rights of Animals”). These opponents feel strongly that legislation must be passed to ban cruel dog breeding immediately, and will do anything in their power to make that happen. Evidently, the persistent argument on puppy mills has strong supporters on both sides, but from the opponents’ relentless struggle to eliminate puppy mill cruelty, results have emerged as they push to pass laws against such measures.



In response to the public, many private campaigners and anti-cruelty organizations are working to ultimately eliminate puppy mills by illegalizing all animal abuse, discovering more mill locations, outlawing private sales, and above all, educating the public. One owner took a stand by adopting puppies from dog auctions in order to rescue them from ending up back at their mills. After nursing her dogs back to health, this woman decided it was time to educate the public on dog abuse and she began to rally against mills by handing out flyers and making public speeches (Vogel 1). Although this was only a small step in the vast issue of animal cruelty, her act proves that it is possible for anybody to make a difference. From a larger standpoint, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) is also working to eliminate as many puppy mills as possible. This organization works with the local law enforcement to discover mills through investigation, and raids these mills in attempt to shut every illegal puppy mill down. The HSUS is also helping in the ongoing struggle to eradicate puppy mills through their work in uncovering the illegal breeding facilities, for the government, by utilizing the public. In order to incorporate the public, the HSUS lead anti-puppy mill campaigns, set up hotlines for puppy mill suspicion, and educate locals not only about how to care for abused rescued puppies, but also how to save any evidence found and properly document this for the government. As well as working with the public, the HSUS works with Congress to persuade the alteration of the superannuated Animal Welfare Act, in order to outlaw all animal abuse, including direct public sales, previously not included. On the other hand, if the mills are law abiding, providing sufficient nutrients and shelter, despite abuse, they cannot be raided or closed (“Puppy Mills FAQ”). Since there are many legally operated puppy mills still horribly abusing animals, it is necessary, in order to abolish such mills, for the public population of consumers to stop supporting these puppy factories through their purchases, and instead receive puppies from shelters or reputable organizations. Attempts made by certain organizations and individuals can only contribute so much to the fight against animal cruelty and puppy mills; therefore, it is essential for more of the public population to learn about the plight of puppy mill dogs and aid in efforts to abolish not only puppy mills, but animal abuse altogether.



Selfish breeders, economic struggles, and the public demand for purebreds, are the sole causes of the ongoing abuse and cruelty that is destroying the lives of innocent puppies, forced to be bred and raised in puppy mills. Leading breeders in charge of local puppy mills conduct these abusive organizations for one sole purpose -- economic profit. They care nothing for the health or needs of the animals in their care, and do not give a second thought to the difficult life that the puppy and its new owner will be forced to lead; instead, these breeders’ only focus is on the money received from deceitful deals. Money is also the concern for the buyers of puppy mill dogs, supporting the mills. Purebred puppies can be worth thousands of dollars, and the consumer demand for these animals is outrageously high. Buying a puppy mill dog for a little less, with purebreds being so costly, sounds like the perfect plan for resourceful consumers. The only knowledge possessed by the purchasers of puppy mill purebreds is that they are receiving an expensive canine for a reasonable price, unaware of the sadistic home where their new puppy was raised. Selfish desires from both breeders and consumers are the sole instigators of the gruesome, dreadful puppy breeding farms, causing millions of innocent animals to lose their lives.



Puppy mills, a cruel and selfish form of animal breeding, are facilitated in order to supply humans with their careless desires for purebred puppies, gained through inhumane treatment of canines; although, due to lack of government effort, they can only be stopped through the nation’s avid public support. The destructive effects of puppy mills influence many innocent victims and cause the overpopulation of sickly dogs in America. If it is not aborted soon, the process of mill breeding could kill millions more dogs and break millions of hearts before anybody decides to pay attention or take a stand against the abuse. It is essential for the public to be educated about not only puppy mill cruelty, but also about animal abuse altogether, as it is a pressing and important issue. Animal cruelty has the potential to affect anyone’s life, whether it is direct or indirect. From a more significant standpoint, God’s creations are being abused and dying without reason all around the world, and we, as his people, are doing nothing to stop it. Learn about puppy mills and animal cruelty, end the unaware consumer support, educate others, rally against the abuse, and take a stand to put an end to the innocent killing of God’s handiwork.



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