August 11, 2009
The HSUS Assists in Rescue of More Than 500 Dogs from Texas Puppy Mill
KAUFMAN, Texas — The Humane Society of the United States, in conjunction with the Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake and the Kaufman County Sheriff's Department, rescued more than 500 dogs and approximately 15 cats from deplorable conditions at a Kaufman County puppy mill.
"This day marks a new beginning for these animals, who are suffering from a variety of serious health conditions and have been kept in constant confinement their entire lives producing puppies for the profit of the mill owner," said Scotlund Haisley, senior director of Emergency Services at The HSUS. "We applaud the Kaufman County Sheriff's Department for taking a stand against this abusive behavior, and allowing us to come in and rescue more than 500 animals."
The HSUS conducted a joint investigation with the Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake, which resulted in the Kaufman County Sheriff's Department's initiating its own investigation and obtaining a search warrant in this case. Volunteers from United Animal Nations are on hand to assist with the temporary shelter for the rescued animals. Much-needed supplies were provided by PetSmart Charities®, which sent its Emergency Relief Waggin'® full of donated goods such as wire crates, dog food and bedding.
When rescuers arrived at the property, they encountered a disturbing scene. The dogs are mainly small breeds such as poodles and Chihuahuas. These neglected animals were housed in filthy conditions and exposed to the harsh elements all year round. Many of the dogs are severely matted and suffering from chronic infected wounds, internal and external parasites and serious skin and eye infections. It is obvious that many of these animals had never known life outside their wire cages.
All of the animals are being swiftly removed and transported to a nearby emergency shelter set up specifically for this rescue mission. After arriving at the shelter, the dogs and cats will be checked by a team of veterinarians and given any necessary immediate medical care. The Kaufman County Sheriff's Department is providing 24-hour security at the emergency shelter to ensure the safety of the rescued animals.
This operation is made possible in part from funding provided to The HSUS by the Kenneth and Lillian Wilde Foundation, who created the Wilde Puppy Mill Task Force to rescue animals from abusive puppy mills.
Tips on Avoiding Getting a Puppy Mill Dog
- Consider adoption first when getting a pet. Animal shelters are filled with dogs and cats of all breeds and sizes who need and deserve loving homes. Nationwide, approximately 25% of the dogs in shelters are purebreds.
- Find a responsible breeder and visit their premises in person to see how the parent dogs are living and the conditions in which the puppy was raised. Responsible breeders house their dogs as members of the family and do not keep them confined to cages.
- Don't be fooled by common claims made by pet stores when pushing their puppies. Good breeders do not sell to pet stores because they want to meet the families who are taking home their puppies.
- Don't be swayed by a great website or ad; many of the puppy mills The HSUS has raided in recent years hid behind beautiful and deceiving websites promising "family raised" puppies.
- Avoid the temptation to "rescue" a puppy mill puppy by buying him; your purchase will only help perpetuate a cruel industry and another dog will quickly fill his cage.
- For more information on how to get a puppy from a shelter or a responsible breeder, go to humanesociety.org/puppy.
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The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization — backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty — On the web at humanesociety.org.