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Friday, March 18, 2011

Dear Whoopi,

This morning on The View, you made a statement defending your right to purchase a puppy from a pet store. 

I would support your right to buy a puppy from a pet store IF 99% of those puppies did not come from puppy mills. You and all consumers have the right to buy a puppy whose parents are not neglected and suffering in these horrible mills. When that puppy in the window's parents are no longer suffering and are being raised and loved in a home setting, receiving proper veterinary and grooming care, and know what it is like to be part of a family rather than refered to as a # amongst breeding stock, then I will agree with you. When animals INCLUDING PUPPIES are not being routinely euthanized in shelters all over the US, then I will agree with you. For now, we stand far apart.

I see animals from these large facilities in such deplorable condition.  They come into my office with matted coats, teeth literally rotting out of their heads, interdigital cysts between their toes caused by irritation from living only on wire flooring, eyes burned dry from environmental conditions that have high concentrations of ammonia due to volumes of urine and feces, urine scalding from sitting in their own urine and feces, coats permanently stained from sitting in their own urine and feces.   The odor cannot be washed from their fur, so they must be shaved. 

US shelters are routinely euthanizing dogs, cats,  AND puppies, and kittens by the millions per year.  In an economy when people's lives are being abruptly changed due to job losses, divorces, and evictions, the shelters and rescues are inundated with animals with which even loving owners tearfully have to part.  Many of these animals never find homes.

Here is a well done educational video, The Truth About Euthanasia!

Yet these commercial breeders/puppy mills are still producing their product.  In Iowa alone there are approximately 400 puppy mills, many of whom have hundreds of dogs breeding within them.  The number of puppies produced are staggering, and they are sold in pet stores and on the internet. 

Here are a few videos you can watch to see what puppy mills are:

When buying that puppy from the pet store, you are sentencing that puppy's parents to sit in squalor and breed until they no longer produce.  You are saying that what those parents are suffering is OK. 

What happens when they no longer produce?  Let's ask a breeder...

Please remember, the puppy sold today from that pet shop window, may be the dog that is euthanized in the shelter in 2 years when no one adopts it.

(My apologies to my regular readers, I had to interrupt in the middle of a blog series, but could not resist speaking out when I heard about Whoopi Goldberg's remarks.  Thank you to Companion Animal Protection Society for their videos and more importantly, for their continued investigations and enlightenment.)

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Mel Battison said...

Amen. I posted this on her facebook page, hope you don't mind.

I bet she's wishing she had never said that.

Dutch Country Animal Rescue said...

My organization has taken in many puppy mill rescues and rehabilitated them. These dogs were in very poor condition and emotionally scarred for life. We have also rescued many dogs from high-kill shelters around the country.

I urge people, such as Whoopie, who are looked up to be society as role models, to promote behaviors that encourage humane treatment of animals. It is a fact that thousands and thousands of dogs are euthanized every year and that problem stems in part from the sale of puppy mill bred dogs in petstores.

Please Whoopie, be part of the solution of this growing problem and help us educate the public on the truth about puppy mills and the importance of spaying/neutering one's pet.

With respect,
Kate Suileahbain Grundon
Founder & President, Dutch Country Animal Rescue, Bucks County, PA

Anonymous said...

I rescued my 6 mo old purebreed choc lab from a local pet store. As he was too "old" to sell he was set up for euthanization. luckily some friends and I found out and i was able to take home a terrified, scarred up (from too small of a cage), unsocialized, sick guy. it took a month to get him to potty outside and longer to socialize to the point where we could pet him. now he is a sweet overly affectionate 3 year old.

Anonymous said...

Well said, and thank you. May I also refer you and your readers to and its heartbreaking compilation of videos that vividly reveal the truth of how these commercially-bred dogs exist for their entire miserable lives:

Blessings to all four-legged creatures who suffer so terribly under the "care" and "right to freedom" of their human stewards.

Anonymous said...

A law that would reduce the abominable cruelty in puppy mills in Missouri was just repealed. Now, those poor dogs, and probably cats and other animals, too, will be subjected to increased levels of cruelty and inhumane treatment. They are not seen as living beings with needs and emotions. They are profit making devices.

The horrendous activity of a shelter in South Carolina was just publicized. The person in charge of the shelter did not oversee humane euthanasia. He let dogs and puppies (who were waiting for homes and rescues that were already lined up) loose in a land fill and had sherrif's deputies shoot them.

An "animal control" worker in Ohio, removed 37 dogs from a home in a suspected hoarding case and because they, in his words, "looked like they had mange," a curable disease, he murdered them by gassing them rather than allowing them to have veterinary care and having a chance at getting new homes.

A dog sledding outfit in Whistler, Canada shot, by shotgun and slashed the throats of 100 sled dogs, because their business was failing. They didn't even give those dogs a chance at being adopted out.

This does not only happen with mammals, either. Parrots that are marketed in stores are frequently bred in similar situations. Less than a month ago, a bust was made in Texas where upwards of a thousand parrots of varying species were found in horrendous conditions. These birds were bound for pet stores, big box pet stores, and internet sales.

Parrot rescues are inundated because people purchase birds on impulse, thinking they will not be trouble to care for. Parrots, even budgies, need even more care than cats and dogs. When people realize this, they become disenchanted and bored. They do not want to do the work required. The bird becomes neglected, is not cared for properly, develops behavioral problems and ends up being dicarded like yesterday's trash.

All of my birds are from public animal shelters or adopted from people who were dumping them because they did not want their birds any more.

Dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, livestock, chickens, geese, parrots, and other animals are dying by the thousands every day, because there are not enough homes. Rescues are inundated and struggling for funds and foster homes to care for the animals in their charge.

Puppy mills should be illegal. In my opinoin, a moritorium should be placed on all breeding for a number of years regardless of the "show circuit." Pet stores...don't get me started.

Government run shelters in Japan are threatening to start killing animals with CO2 gassing if they are not claimed within 72 hours. This is their standard practice. Even in the wake of this tragedy, despite the fact that they are over run and having a hard time operating, they are not giving people time to find their missing animals or for the animals to be adopted by new people. Their situation is desperate and thousands, or more, animals will lose their lives.

In Los Angeles, Toy dog breeds are popular because of the celebutants who schlep them around...until they get bored. The LA shelters are bursting at the seems with all sizes and breeds, many pure breds, cats and dogs. People are having to relinquish their pets because they cannot afford to care for them any longer and they either do not know about rescues or do not have time to find a rescue that has foster space.

As for Ms. Goldberg, she professes to be a humanitarian. I cannot doubt that. But, I can ask her why she thinks perpetuating needless death of thousands of animals daily and horendous mistreatment of thousands more is o.k.
Answer me that, Whoppi.
As a matter of fact, lets ask Oprah, too. Doesn't she get puppies from breeders?

Dawn said...

Over twenty years ago, I purchased my last dog from a pet shop. I must admit, my family and I got lucky. This dog was from someone that the lady who owned the store knew, and we knew the lady who owned the store personally so, our Amy was NOT from a puppy mill. I DESPISE those places now though. The woman that owned that shop is now deceased and the shop closed a long time ago but we will NEVER buy another animal from a pet store. There must be a way to close down ALL puppy mills. They are such cruel terrible places.

Angelique said...


Anonymous said...

I foster dogs thru a rescue group and most of them came from a puppy mill. One of mine was heartworm postive and we treated him and now he is negative (thank goodness). I also had a rat terrier that was in a puppy mill for 10 years and I took her in and she was so loving but she was ill, skinny only had one tooth and was not housebroken. She passed away after 2 years living in my home. I thank god the last two years she was so loved and lived in a clean home. I have 2 others that are so scared because they are not use to being in a home, they are use to being in a crate 24/7. So no I don't believe in pet stores selling puppies. Most of the time they are sick.

Anonymous said...


Robert R. James said...

Ya know, i dont usually comment when a celeb says something dumb, or uninformed - they're only people, just like us - and their celeb status doesn't increase their I.Q., nor does it have any bearing whatsoever on the validity of their judgements and opinions.

There is no reason to expect any more (or less) wisdom or even common sense to inhabit a person, simply as a result of fame. -

However - i know more than a few "Stars", all of whom are animal activists, and they've always spoken very highly of Whoopi. -- Thats what confounds me. -

She's been famous a while now. She knows that people listen to her, whether she's right or wrong. Many will actually form their very opinions based on what she, and other "celebrities" choose to say.

I have a "celebrity" friend who suggests that "Stars" wear a sign which says, "Yeah, I might be famous - but that don't mean I'm right."

And it sure as hell doesn't mean anyone should pay more attention to someone's view, just because they're on "The View".

Unfortunately, one uninformed comment by Whoopi will have repercussions which i hate to even imagine. -
And, in my opinion, she's got a helluva nerve criticizing Sarah Palin for hunting wolves - and then heading down to the puppy store to pick up a cute little mill-raised puppy! -

Palin says she only kills what she can eat - Hey Sarah, go kill an iceberg, and make 10,000 popscycles! -

And Whoopi? - i just walked by about 110 puppies today at a Shelter in L.A. - and guess what? - they were offering them at a St. Patty's day discount pull fee - like 25 bucks or so. I wonder what your puppy set you back -- and imagine the good you could have done if you had just donated that 2, 3 or 4 hundred bucks to ANY OTHER WORTHY CAUSE. -

Sorry - I never come away from a Shelter feeling very polite, or forgiving.

Robert R. James