In his post, Steve begins by saying:
I am a pet advocate - therefore I generally support pet stores. Of course, they're great places to purchase toys, treats, food - even winter garments and stylish holiday sweaters.
However, pet stores are not such a great place to purchase puppies or kittens... arguably the last place you want to get a puppy or kitten - unless you support puppy mills.
He then gives reasons why he believes that purchasing a pet from a pet store supports puppy mills:
I don't personally know of a responsible breeder who sells to pet stores. To be clear - not only am I not against breeders, I stand with the good ones. There's value in having a pedigree dog or cat, and a well bred pet if that's what you desire. There's most certainly also value in a shelter animal, and truly saving a life.
By definition responsible breeders are discerning about who they sell their animals to. Responsible breeders carefully socialize their animals, and do the best they can to prevent disease transmission. By selling puppies or kittens to pet stores "breeders" lose all control. That is hardly being responsible. Responsible breeders do not sell to pet stores any more than responsible pet owners should purchase from pet stores.
Most important: Pet stores sell to whoever has a credit card that works, not to the right family for that pet.If you are thinking about adding a furry member to your family this holiday season, please consider visiting your local animal shelter. If you have your heart set on a pure breed dog or cat, contact a breed rescue group or a responsible breeder. But whatever you do - do not purchase your next best friend from a pet store.
Thanks to Steve Dale for addressing this important issue. You can read his full blog post here.