The Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety Act or “P.U.P.S.” Act would close the USDA loophole allowing puppy mills to sell over the internet, by phone or by newspaper with no USDA oversight. To support the P.U.P.S. Act is to stand in solidarity against puppy mills. (The bill is available here.)
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Stop puppy mills from hiding behind the internet! http://bit.ly/mYrhAP #BTC4A
Why It Matters
Puppy millers and breeders who sell puppies to pet stores must have a USDA dealer license and are subject to periodic inspections by the USDA. In addition, they must follow state and federal guidelines around reporting (i.e., number of breeding pairs), transporting and shipping of animals (i.e., restrictions on age puppies can be transported) and overall care of their animals (housing, sanitation, food, water, etc.).
However, puppy mills who sell over the internet are not subject to these same requirements. As a result, selling from a website or an online classified ad is becoming an increasingly popular option. The internet allows them to continue to sell their puppies with ease while hiding the true nature of their business. Thousands of puppies are now sold each year through internet, either directly from a puppy miller’s own website or via internet classified ads. They create appealing websites featuring cute photos of puppies and pepper them with misleading statements like “family raised” to fool consumers into thinking they are a responsible breeder.
The Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety Act, or the “P.U.P.S.” Act, would close this loophole and would add more stringent exercise requirements for dog breeders. Specifiically, the PUPS Act would 1) require that anyone who sells more than 50 puppies per year (including those who sell over the internet) must be federally licensed and inspected, and 2) require dog breeders to exercise every dog every day, including allowing the dogs to reach a running stride without the use of treadmills or similar devices. Can you imagine a puppy mill with 500 dogs exercising every single one every day? That’s why this amendment is so important.
First introduced into U.S. House of Representatives by Reps. Gerlach, Farr, Capps and Young, and in the U.S. Senate by Senator Dick Durbin, both bills have continued to garner additional support. The House bill already has 125 co-sponsors (up from 116 in September) and the U.S. Senate has 14 co-sponsors as of October of this year. You have a chance to increase these numbers and to change a dog’s life.
Senator Durbin is quoted in DVM Magazine to say:
The media regularly reports stories about dogs rescued from substandard facilities—where dogs are housed in stacked wire cages and seriously ill dogs are routinely denied access to veterinary care. Online dog sales have contributed to the rise of these disturbing cases. My bipartisan bill requires breeders who sell more than 50 dogs a year directly to the public to obtain a license from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and ensures that the dogs receive proper care.
Ask your U.S. Senator and Representatives to support and co-sponsor the PUPS Act. Spread the word any way you can. Let’s stop puppy millers from hiding behind the internet and save the lives of thousands of dogs who suffer needlessly every day.
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Editor’s Note: Please welcome BTC Team Member, Mel Freer.
Mel has been an active cause scout and general contributor since June 2011, now making her writing debut during our October-long campaign against puppy mills. Mel’s yellow lab, Daisy, is rescued mill dog – #201.
Mel also blogs at No Dog About It.