Commercial Breeding Enterprises (CBEs) versus registered dog breeders

I think it is useful to look at the difference between Commercial Breeding Enterprises (CBEs) and registered dog and cat breeders. My interest in comparing these commercial enterprises came about because Nathan Winograd tells us that about 400 cities and 4 states have passed laws which ban the sale of commercially bred dogs, cats and rabbits in pet stores.

American Kennel Club Breeder of Merit's home
American Kennel Club Breeder of Merit’s home. Nathan Winograd (America’s champion of animal welfare) writes “Authorities found these conditions at an AKC “Breeder of Merit” only eight days after an AKC inspection. The “Breeder of Merit” was charged with cruelty.” Image: Winograd’s website.
Until September 7th I will give 10 cents to an animal charity for every comment written by visitors. It is a way visitors can contribute to animal welfare without much effort and no financial cost. Please comment. It helps this website too which at heart is about cat welfare.

Pet stores buy CBE bred dogs

Pet stores get their animals from CBEs. These are also known as “puppy mills”. They don’t get their animals from registered purebred dog breeders who are affiliated to the American Kennel Club. Nathan Winograd writes: “No breeder of any repute would supply the pet store trade because pet stores do not screen potential homes and do not put in place socialization and healthcare agreements.”

Appalling puppy mills

The reason why laws have been passed to stop pet stores selling animals bred at puppy mills is for health and welfare reasons. These “factories” have an appalling record of animal abuse. The breeding dogs are kept in cages all their lives and bred relentlessly. That’s bound to create mental health problems and it is horribly cruel. And often the puppies are inherently sick sometimes with chronic diseases and they aren’t socialised properly or at all and therefore purchasers can end up with a puppy costing thousands of pounds in veterinary bills. It’s a complete disaster. Therefore, to stop pet store selling puppy mill dogs and cats is a good thing in the interests of animal welfare.

Failure of USDA

One veterinarian, Nancy Halpern DVM, says that the USDA supervises puppy mills with great stringency, but Nathan Winograd says that is untrue. And it must be untrue because the conditions are horrendous. He says that the USDA prefers to cooperate with puppy mill breeders rather than punish them. The attitude seems to be to take little or no enforcement action against violators even those that violate repeatedly.

Winograd says that in one instance a USDA inspector found dead and starving dogs. The dogs had resorted to cannibalism and the whole facility was overrun with faeces and urine, but the USDA inspector did not remove the surviving dogs and subsequently 22 more dogs died. A sure-fire indication of a lack of commitment to regulating these facilities.

And existing laws are not robust enough apparently to protect dogs. So, these puppy mills need to be shut down and that is happening indirectly because the pet stores are no longer purchasing from them (see below).

Pet stores selling rescue animals

The laws mentioned are intended to force pet stores to take rescue animals from the plethora of animal rescue shelters in America which must be a good idea. It should be a necessity and I guess in certain jurisdictions it is.

Puppy mills are closing

The new laws that ban the sale of bred animals in pet stores has severely affected the profits of breeders with the Nebraska Department of Agriculture recording that half of the state’s commercial dog and cat breeders have shut down. The trend would seem to be that more cities and states will create similar laws and there will be similar closures of puppy mills.

Pet stores selling rescue animals from abroad?

To return to the American veterinarian who says that these laws are hopeless and will not improve dog welfare, she claims that pet stores are buying rescue animals that have been imported from abroad like China. The veterinarian, Halpern, refers to the “retail rescue market” which is unregulated. Note, it also seems that puppy mills are in effect unregulated by the USDA!

She claims that “dogs are increasingly being imported by animal rescue organisations, who should be, but are not licensed by USDA”.

Purebred dog breeders

You would have thought that purebred, pedigree dog breeders registered with the AKC would be of high quality. But Winograd enlightens us in that respect to. The AKC claims that they have a dedicated team of field agents to certify breeders.

But an analysis of their inspections tells us that only 10 inspectors are working to cover 138,500 certified breeders. The AKC is only inspecting 5% of them. In this lack of regulation is shown up in animal abuse even by so-called ‘Breeders of Merit’ (see photo above). In one example, an AKC Breeder America was arrested and charged with animal cruelty. This occurred eight days after an AKC inspector visited the property.

So, in making a comparison between puppy mills and authorised breeders we don’t see a great difference sometimes although the perception is that puppy mills are horrendous and AKC breeders are organised and have high welfare standards.

I guess they must have, in general, good standards but inspection standards are low.

How Healthy Is That Kitten or Puppy On the Website?

The Amish’s 19th-Century Ways Results in Amish Puppy Mills

Leave a Comment

follow it link and logo