Thursday, March 15, 2012

Puppy Mills

Dear Mr. President,

My name is Esméralda. I am a student at Parkway West Middle School, and I am writing to you today to share my thoughts about puppy mills.

                I first became interested in puppy mills when I read a book in which a girl saved all the dogs from puppy mills. Puppy mills are a terrible thing, and as you have a dog of your own, you can understand how terrible it is for dogs or puppies to be injured.

            Dog lovers beware! If you are a person looking to buy a dog, then you should be well informed about puppy mills. A puppy mill is a large dog breeding operation where people would rather earn easy money than take good care of the dogs. The people that have puppy mills take a dog and make it breed as many times as possible, until the dog dies. Then the puppies that the dog had are kept in cages, and sold for easy money, because people don't know what they're buying. The conditions that the dogs are kept in are outrageous! They are kept in small cages, with barely enough room to turn around. The cages are not cleaned and don't get enough food, water or time to interact with other dogs. They are either kept inside, so they can never feel the fresh air, or kept outside; bearing all the weather that throws at them.

Dogs that come from puppy mills can have many, many diseases. On the Humane Society website there is a list of the things that can happen to dogs. Here it is!

Epilepsy, Heart Disease, Kidney Disease, Musculoskeletal disorders, Endocrine disorders, Blood disorders, Deafness, Eye problems, Respiratory problems, Giardia, Parvovirus, Distemper, Upper respiratory infections, Kennel cough, Pneumonia, Mange, Fleas, Ticks, Intestinal parasites, Heartworm, Chronic diarrhea and many, many more.

Now that I have told you a bit about what goes on in puppy mills, you might want to know when they started, and why.

Puppy mills started in after World War Two, because people needed a way to respond to the crop failures in the Midwest. So puppies became the new "cash crop". It's easy to understand why people would do this. It is much easier to have breed dogs that are not as vulnerable to weather as crops and it's easier to take care of dogs than crops. Today the largest puppy mill state in the country is Missouri!

Picture yourself, a poor little puppy, stuck in a cage that no one cleans, always hungry, always thirsty, and very lonely. Imagine having pneumonia, with no way to help yourself. Imagine being separated from your mom, a few months after birth! How would that make you feel? Just think about it.

Many people think that dogs don't care that they are stuffed into small cages at puppy mills but actually, dogs have feelings! Many don't notice, but dog owners can recognize how their dog feels just by how they act! As an article from Purina states, "Emotions are what give dogs and impulse to act in response to an event of situation, and also how they feel when they have reacted." This means that being in a cage for years will bring out bad emotions in dogs and they will be sad and lonely.

Now, people that own puppy mills think that they are good. And from their perspective this is true! They make easy money, don't have to pay anything, and don't have to do anything either! But in reality all they are doing is hurting many dogs.

There are so many ways that you can help, even if you never come into contact with a puppy mill! When buying dogs, be careful! Do NOT buy on the internet. After a bit of searching you see tons of ads that are showing beautiful dogs that you are fawning over, but really, anyone could have put that on the internet. And also, did you know that pet store dogs are usually supplied by puppy mills! They pet stores lie about the dogs' age, and their background. Dogs are sold at eight months old and usually have many diseases. If you stop buying dogs from pet stores and go to shelters instead, then the need for the pet stores to obtain dogs from puppy mills will lessen, and puppy mills will go out of business. People can lure you in with pictures of cute dogs, which are in reality found on clip art or on the internet, and instead you get a sick puppy. People also make the dog's life seem sad, and painful, which makes you want to buy that puppy and give it a good home. The better option is to adopt a dog in a shelter, where you know the exact information.

If you do know about a puppy mill near you, then contact your nearest animal shelter! Here is an excerpt from an article from the ASPCA website that gives you some information about how to help. "… Speak Out! Inform your state and federal legislators that you are disturbed by the inhumane treatment of dogs in puppy mills, and would like to see legislation passed that ensures that all animals bred to be pets are raised in healthy conditions. Tell Your Friends! If someone you know is planning on buying a puppy, please direct them to let them know that there are perfectly healthy dogs in the shelters waiting to be adopted. …"

These are only a few of the things that you can do! Please help stop animal cruelty!    


                Mr. President, please do all your power to stop puppy mills. If you could appeal to Congress about the creation of a law to stop and/or prevent puppy mills it would help very much.

                Thank you so much for your time, work, and cooperation. I understand that you have many issues to resolve, but I would be very grateful if you could find the time to deal with this issue. Thank you so very, very much!



Parkway West Middle School

St. Louis, MO



Mrs. Elsie F. Rafferty

MOSAICS Specialist

Parkway West Middle School


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