UPDATE: Check out our latest investigation into puppy farmer providing to a Brisbane pet store that is misleading consumers.
Companion animals are a big part of Australian culture with around 5 million of the 7.5 million households in Australia being homes to dogs, cats and other animals. The companion animal industry is big business and estimates suggest it generates a profit of $8 billion annually.
ALQ is working to promote three ideals:
1) Entirely shut down puppy factory farming in QLD;
2) Mandatory sale exclusively of only adopted pets from registered shelters in pet shops and online trading.
3) Promote the adopt don't shop message for your next pet.
Large-scale factory farming of dogs is happening in Australia. In EVERY state. Dogs are hidden away from the public, in large sheds in stalls or cages, with improper bedding, no veterinary care and are totally deprived of their basic needs. Dogs on puppy farms suffer psychological torment as they are kept in a continual state of pregnancy, are not socialised or free to exhibit natural behaviours, and have their puppies forcibly removed. They languish in filthy conditions and suffer chronic illnesses due to complete disregard for their wellbeing.
When the dogs are no longer producing puppies, they are killed. This is the true cost of ‘that doggy in the window’. “Man’s best friend” reduced to a commodity.
The puppies are shipped to pet stores; or sold via trading post or online services such as Gumtree. These puppies produced have questionable health, mental and physical, as a result of their breeding. And thus the cycle of potential abandonment, overpopulation of shelters and pounds, and ultimate euthanasia of countless animals continues.
More Australians now have dogs as pets than ever before. While this is great, sadly this demand also can stem to an increase in breeders, backyard breeders and puppy farms. Pet stores multiply, and shelters overflow. Eventually the numbers of animals outweigh the number of owners, and sadly, over 250, 000 animals are euthanised each year in Australia.
Breeders more often than not, treat animals as a commodity. They may state they exist for "love of the breed" but reality is they function as a business foremost, and as such, have targets and quotas to meet. This means producing as many litters as possible, and forcing females to endure an unnatural number of pregnancies. The desire for purebred and “designer” companions has created an overpopulation of animals, and extreme breeding practices to occur. Inbreeding is common practise for the "look" they desire for their puppies. Inbreeding leads to physical, social and psychological issues for these puppies. Traits "not so desirable" once the puppy is purchased and taken home, and many of these animals are abandoned or surrendered to pounds and shelters across Australia. Literally tens of thousands of these unwanted animals are surrendered to shelters each year. It is impossible to rehome them all so thousands of them are euthanised. So while people eagerly place their expensive deposits on Cavoodles, or Jackaliers, they are condemning other animals to death.
Pet shops exist to make money. Period. And they do so irresponsibly. Animals sold are not desexed, their origins are questionable, as is their health and mental state. Potential owners are endure little to no scrutiny, and thus encouraging impulse buys and irresponsible breed to person matching. The animals’ best interest is clearly not their priority. Pet shops successfully dupe the public into thinking the fluffy puppies, cute kittens, baby rats, and other animals, come from “local breeders” or “reputable breeding facilities”. NOTHING could be further from the truth. It’s in their interest to meet demand with constant supply, therefore most animals will come from intensive breeding facilities like puppy farms. Impulse buying in pet shops can also lead to the issue of abandoned animals that become strays, continually reproduce, kill wildlife and die due to illness, starvation or accidents. Pet shops across the globe are changing directions, and partnering with shelters to sell exclusively adoptable animals.
What can you do?
1) Adopt Don’t Shop: Never buy an animal from a pet shop or gumtree/ trading post. Always adopt a rescue from a shelter, and ensure they are desexed.
Shelter and rescue animals makes the BEST friends because:
• A second chance at life and love for mans best friend – SAVE A LIFE! ADOPT!
• The cost of your new friend includes desexing, health checks and any relevant medical disclaimers upfront
• You are always able to contact shelter after you taking your next family member home
2) Learn how to identify a puppy farm
Here's how it goes: That puppy in that shop, on that website or newspaper is cute. Really cute. You go and buy that puppy, making sure you bring exact cash, and meeting at the nearby "park or shops" to pick them up. You take your new bundle home, all is well, you have your newest fur friend. The next minute, your puppy is exhibiting illness and unusual behavioural issues, and the phone number the "breeder" gave you to call is now disconnected. They vanish.
Alarm bells are warranted when the puppy supplier won't let you visit the puppy's home, or to view the mother, father and remaining litter. Even if they have invited you to their home to view the puppy you desire, if they call you on the agreed day and ask you to meet them "halfway" at a new destination or they change plans, this is a very common tactic to trick you into not seeing the conditions your puppy came from.
So when choosing your next puppy:
• If they won’t let you view the animal on its property, or view the mother/ father or siblings, DO NOT PURCHASE FROM THEM!
• Please report suspected puppy farms to the RSPCA.
• Puppy farms stay in business due to pet shops and online trading – don’t perpetuate the cycle!
• ADOPT DON’T SHOP!
3) Report Cruelty - If you witness cruelty, or questioning a suspected puppy mill, please call RSPCA on 1300 ANIMAL (1300 264 625)
4) Practice responsible pet ownership
• Ensure that your companion for life receives regular health checks
• Feed them a balanced diet
• Exercise them and play with them
• They are part of the family – let them in!
• Never chain an animal
• They’re reliant on you and will love you forever in return ☺
5) Educate Pet shops - If you see animals for sale in pet shops, politely discuss your concerns with staff or write to the manager. Suggesting they sell adoptable animals from shelter to save lives.
6) Be their voice! Write to your MP, and demand they be your voice for our puppies coming up the new legislation.
7) Teach children the realities of puppy farming.
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