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August 9, 2011

The HSUS Praises Missouri Attorney General for Cracking Down on Third Substandard Puppy Mill this Summer

Problem breeder required to transfer dogs to nonprofit animal shelter.

The Humane Society of the United States praised Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster for ordering the closure of a third puppy mill in as many months after inspections conducted by the Missouri Department of Agriculture reportedly documented woeful conditions at the facility — including failure to obtain veterinary care for animals in obvious medical distress, lack of adequate sanitation or space, and lack of protection from harsh weather conditions, among other problems.  The AG’s office required the most recently shuttered breeder, Shirley Gilbert, to transfer her dogs to the Humane Society of Missouri to be placed for adoption, rather than allowing them to be sold at auction.

“The Humane Society of the United States applauds Attorney General Koster for taking action against several substandard puppy mills this year, after inspections found dogs suffering in filthy conditions with inadequate veterinary care,” said Melanie Kahn, senior director of the Puppy Mills Campaign for The HSUS. “We’re also grateful that he listened to concerns from animal advocates and facilitated the transfer of the dogs from Gilbert’s facility to a nonprofit animal shelter so that they can finally have a chance at a real home and family — rather than simply being transferred to another mill.”

In addition to transferring her dogs to The Humane Society of Missouri, Gilbert was required to close her business for at least 6 years and pay a $500 civil penalty, $1,000 in court fees and investigation costs, and $200 in consumer restitution, according to the AG’s press release.

The HSUS urges people who want to get a puppy to consider adopting from a shelter or rescue group first. If deciding to buy from a breeder, potential buyers should always visit the breeder and see that the dogs are treated humanely and ensure the puppies and their parents are living in spacious, clean areas. For more information, see humanesociety.org/puppy.

Media Contact: Jordan Crump: 301-548-7793, jcrump@humanesociety.org

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