Just one short month ago we decided to bring a new puppy home. Something we have waited years for, as we wanted the girls to be old enough to understand the responsibilities of taking care of a dog, and old enough that they could respect an animal and give it the adequate space it deserved.
We felt that we researched dogs and breeders well and decided to go with Ayers Pampered Pets, what we have now found out to be a puppy mill located in Hull, Georgia! When the dog flew in into LAX from Georgia, you can imagine my excitement to see this new little face that would become an integrate part of our family. When she arrived she appeared to be ok, however upon further inspection we quickly learned that she was covered in fleas, had worms, and kennel cough to boot! She was very wild, a sign that she had had little to no interaction. Upon further inspection we realized that this breeder didn’t even bother to remove her dew claws, nor had this 8 week old puppy ever had her nails trimmed.
I would think that any quality breeder would know the future ramifications for the dog when the dew claws are not removed. And, at this point to have them removed would not only risk her health, but the total cost would be a whopping $500 to perform the procedure!
The Kennel Cough we quickly learned is a buggar to get rid of, and being that we had brought another puppy home (just one week before so that this one would have a friend), she had to be quarantined and put on a 7 day round of antibiotics. After the 7 day antibiotics had ran it’s course, we learned that this puppy still had kennel cough and now has to be put on another round of heavier antibiotics to kick this sickness.
What a nightmare! You can only imagine how our vet bills are stacking up. I have asked the breeder for a refund, or at the very least reimbursement for our many vet bills, however she refuses to answer any of my emails. I have filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and I’ve contacted the proper authorities to have her facility checked out. The worst part of it all is that this poor little puppy hasn’t been properly cared for, and at this point I’m just thrilled that she is getting the care that she deserves.
We paid a mint for this little puppy due to our families allergies and went with an allergy friendly dog (a goldendoodle) that was supposed to be low-shedding. I was covered in hair after holding this little puppy for just a moment and we have learned that you don’t always get what you pay for. Now, I can tell you first hand that our other little puppy (a Labradoodle) does’nt shed an ounce and we are not allergic to her at all. However, we purchased her from a reputable breeder here in California that came highly recommended.
What did we learn through all of this? Research your breeders, ask around, read the breeders contract, and ask for references! Many puppy mill’s are operating throughout the US and the unfortunate reality is that the animal rights laws in many states are lacking in the “humane” department. In fact, some states allow breeders to have as many puppies as they would like, and these puppies and their parents can be confined to cages that they barely have room to stand up in.
The reality is shocking, disappointing, inhumane and outright wrong in my humble opinion. After the puppy mill segment on the Today Show this morning, I felt that I should share my experience and warn others about the puppy mills that exist throughout our country.