Friday, April 4, 2008

Puppy Mills on Oprah and a short pregnant man follow up

OK, so the plan was to watch Oprah yesterday to see the pregnant man interview and post a summary about that for those of you who weren't able to see the show. While I was watching, I saw many commercials for today's Oprah show which was about the horrendous conditions of puppy mills. I thought to myself...wow, that's 2 shows in 2 days that I really want to see. Considering I can't even remember the last time I watched Oprah - I am a Dr. Phil person. Anyway I couldn't get to post the pregnant man update last night because hubby was doing his homework on the computer so I figured I would watch the puppy mill show that was on the DVR and post about both stories at once. Can I just tell you that after seeing today's show I could give 2 craps about the pregnant man.

Basically all I have to say is that all of the photos online that I have seen actually looked manly, however this person was obviously born as a woman and after they showed all of her photos growing up (she was a beauty queen so definitely very good looking), it was like looking at a woman with a beard for the rest of the show. Even though this is an extremely weird scenario, everyone involved seems to be fine with it and after seeing the show, it seems more like a same sex couple having a baby together. Obviously this decision is out of the ordinary and not for everyone, but I just hope that for the family's sake that people leave them alone & let them live their lives. Also I hope that the baby (it's a girl) can live her life without being harassed constantly.

And now onto the serious business of today's show on puppy mills...
First of all, I consider myself an animal person. Even though I have never had a dog in my life, I love them and can't wait to move to a place with more space and a big yard so I can fulfill my lifelong dream of having a dog. I don't think I have ever met anyone who didn't LOVE dogs (other than my mom who is extremely allergic and about 100 pounds so she has been knocked over by many dogs in her day). But she still will look at them from a distance and has nothing against them. I have never seen a show that I feel would make every person who saw it sick to their stomach until today when I watched the hidden investigation of puppy mills. In fact, I had to keep rewinding as I was watching because I had to keep getting up to get more tissues...

Here are the basic points everyone should be aware of:
Puppy Mills are operating in every state in the US, however most are located in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and the midwest. There are 10,000 puppy mills currently operating. 99% of dogs in pet stores AND dogs sold online come from puppy mills-no responsible breeder would ever sell to a pet store! These dogs receive no exercise, no vet care, and no affection for their entire lives. They are never walked (many of them do not know how to walk) because they live their entire lives in wire cages. They live outside all year round and are never washed. Adult females are forced to breed every time they are in heat and one dog may produce 140 puppies in 7 years. Currently this practice is NOT ILLEGAL!! The people who own the puppy mills do it for the money and they consider the dogs to be crops, livestock, or a "product"-not pets.

Points to be aware of about animal shelters:
4 million dogs and cats are put down every year due to overcrowding in shelters - when a new animal arrives, an old one that has been around for a while has to go. Only 4 out of 50 dogs that end up in shelters get adopted. Shelters are a great place to get a pet - they have all ages and 1/3 to 1/2 of dogs in shelters are pure breeds.

Many dogs have to be killed every year because of overpopulation. This could be easily avoided if people would spay and neuter their dogs. It is better for their health to be fixed. Both males and females have a reduced risk for cancer. For males especially, they become a much better house pet after they are neutered. If you are worried about the expense of the surgery, there are many free or low cost clinics that you can go to.

The main point here is do not support these puppy mills-DO NOT BUY FROM A PET STORE! I know I am guilty of going into many pet stores and staring at the cute little puppies for sale. Let me tell you something-now that I have seen the conditions that the mothers of these puppies have to live with, I would never buy one because the cycle will just keep going and going...If you are looking to get a dog, start at your local shelter. If you are looking for a specific breed, you can also go online and find a breed rescue organization in your area. It is also acceptable to buy from a RESPONSIBLE BREEDER. There are some out there but you have to do your homework because obviously no one is going to tell you that they are a puppy mill. A couple of things to look for-a responsible breeder will want to meet/interview the family to make sure the dog will be getting a loving home, they will be willing to take the dog back if there are any problems, they will be more than happy to take you around their facility and show you all of the dogs on the premises (make especially sure that you see this puppy's mother and all of the breeding females-these are the dogs who have it the worst!)

If you would like more information on this topic or to fight back against puppy mills check out Oprah's website.


11 comments:

Melain said...

Your blog deco is super cute! I want to get a dog next year, so this is good information.

Though I can't believe that crap about the pregnant "dude". REALLY? That seems like something you'd be more likely to see on Jerry Springer. I find myself disappointed.

Dana said...

nice post Heather!!!

I saw the pregnant man thing yesterday and I too cruised Oprah online to check out some of the pics...

I feel sooo bad for the puppies in the Puppy Mill.. They are treated so badly!! But I also feel bad for the pups when they got to the pet store in the tiny cages, my heart goes out to them..

I am a big Animal Lover....

Tipp said...

Girl, I could not even watch that today. My dogs are like my children and I can't imagine them being one of those poor creatures.

It is so important for people to stop buying these dogs, they are directly supporting the trade. No profits = no abused animals, it is that simple. I am so linking this post!!

Pam said...

great post. You are right...after reading about the puppy mills- I could care less about a pregnant man/woman.

30 Minute Mommy said...

I am going to watch the rest of the show on Puppy Mills and post tomorrow!

Rebecka said...

I watched it. It was sad. I probably went through a box of tissues.
At one point, I just turned it off.
I couldn't watch those poor innocent puppies being put through that.

Andrea said...

I've never even heard of puppy mills before - probably because they WANT to keep it a secret! How awful though. I am a huge animal lover myself (although we have no pets right now either due to living in town...) but yikes, I think I would have cried if I had actually watched the show and not just read about it!

LaskiGal said...

First, I just have to say . . . the pregnant man and his family aren't exactly angling for privacy--you don't go on Oprah and the national news if you want privacy. I hope that they consider the impact that the publicity will have on their children . . .

As for the puppy mills, I just couldn't watch. I am a huge animal lover and this would just kill me! I am a big supporter of shelters, so if/when we get a puppy, you can bet he'll be from there. So, so sad. Great post! Thanks for the info!!!

Marcy said...

So sad about the puppy mills when you think of all the dogs that get killed every year b/c of overpopulation. =(

amber said...

omg i'm so sad now i can't believe how horrible people are. . . toby was from a pet store. if i had only known =[ next time we buy though we'll go through a shelter or breeder

Anonymous said...

Great article here but do you know where Oprah bought her 3 Latest dogs last year before Sophie her cocker spaniel died? in 2006 she bought 3 dogs, go see the video...you will be shocked....
its at:

http://doghealth1.com/2008/04/05/oprah-pregnant-man-and-the-puppy-mills/