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September 2, 2009

Sacramento Area Pet Stores Take 'Puppy Friendly' Pledge

The Humane Society of the United States

Thanks to the efforts of local animal advocates, several Sacramento area pet stores have signed The Humane Society of the United States' puppy friendly pet store pledge — committing not to sell puppies, but instead to support local animal adoption programs or provide literature on how to find a local shelter, rescue group or reputable breeder. The HSUS applauds these socially responsible independent retailers because their actions prove it is not necessary to support the puppy mill trade to operate a successful pet-related business.

"These stores have set a positive example of corporate responsibility for other pet-related businesses to follow," said Stephanie Shain, senior director of The HSUS' puppy mills campaign. "Pet stores that profit from the cruel puppy mill industry need to step up and do the right thing by halting puppy sales. Shelters and rescues are brimming with dogs in need of homes." 

Store owners and managers who support The HSUS Puppy Friendly Pet Store initiative receive a placard proclaiming, "We love puppies; that's why we don't sell them," to display in the store, as well as materials about adopting a dog or finding a responsible breeder. The HSUS encourages shoppers to purchase pet supplies at stores displaying the puppy-friendly sign.

Joe Perkins, general manager of Pet Extreme, which has eight locations in California's central valley, has signed The HSUS' pledge and states, "Pet Extreme has never sold puppies and we never will. Our business focus is on selling supplies that keep pets and their families happy and healthy. We believe puppies should not spend their initial socialization periods in a puppy mill or a pet store window; rather, they should be born to dogs who are part of a loving family."

The independent retailers in the Sacramento area that have most recently signed the puppy friendly pledge not to sell puppies are:

  • Animal Nutrition and Grooming Center (Roseville)
  • Ben's Bark Ave Bistro (Lincoln)
  • Douglas Feed & Ranch Supply (Granite Bay)
  • Elverta Feed, Pet & Tack, Inc. (Elverta)
  • Fashion fo Paws and More (Lincoln)
  • Fruitridge Pet Shop (Sacramento)
  • Launderdog & More (Sacramento)
  • Lees' Feed (Shingle Springs)
  • My Dog's Spot (Lincoln)
  • Pet Department Store (Sacramento)
  • Pet Extreme (eight locations in Sacramento, Lodi, Stockton, Livermore, Turlock, Clovis and Woodland)
  • Pet Factory (Woodland)
  • The Doggie Bag (Granite Bay)
  • Wagger Pet Spa & Market (Sacramento)
  • Western Feed & Pet Supply (four Sacramento locations)

Policy Helps Dogs Across the United States

The majority of pet stores that sell puppies carry dogs from puppy mills, which are mass production facilities that churn out large numbers of puppies under inhumane conditions. The breeding dogs at puppy mills spend their entire lives in cramped cages or kennels with little or no personal attention or quality of life. Consumers who purchase puppies from pet stores or over the Internet without seeing a breeder's home firsthand are often unknowingly supporting this cruel puppy mill industry.

Facts

  • Approximately one-third of the nation's 9,000 independent pet stores sell puppies.
  • The HSUS estimates that 2 million to 4 million puppy mill puppies are sold each year in the United States.
  • Documented puppy mill conditions include over-breeding, inbreeding, minimal veterinary care, poor food and shelter, crowded cages and lack of socialization.
  • Dogs kept for breeding in puppy mills suffer for years in continual confinement. They are bred as often as possible and then destroyed or discarded once they can no longer produce puppies.
  • Pet stores and online sellers often use attractive Web sites to hide the truth and to dupe consumers into thinking that they are dealing with a small, reputable breeder.
  • Reputable breeders never sell puppies over the Internet or through a pet store and will insist on meeting the family who will be purchasing the dog.
  • Puppy mills contribute to the pet overpopulation problem, which results in millions of unwanted dogs euthanized at shelters every year.

 To learn more about puppy mills, visit humanesociety.org/puppymills.

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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.

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