The Only Way to Stop Puppy Mills

Each of us have simple pleasures that lift our spirits.
Mine are southern pecan coffee, chocolate dipped french madelines and pure soy candles from Scentsational. Last week, with Earth hour approaching, I went to the store for my favorite candles. Also buying candles was a woman with a Chin like Puff in tow.
Well, I should say a breed like Puff as there certainly was little similarity in type. Martin, the womans' Chin, was about 18 pounds (Puff is 9lbs), with a wry undershot jaw that left his lower canines protruding at a slant,one canine tooth was turned funny and it prevented his lip from lying properly. I suddenly thought of another simple pleasure, the soft velvety nuzzling from my Chin, whose muzzle is as soft as a new born foal' couldn't be nuzzled by this face, his jaw was too messed up.
Still, he was the breed I love and I oohed and awed over him and asked if I could pet him, but he was very aggressive....aggression is a big big no-no according to the breed standard.
His owner in comparison was very nice and told me that he was a puppy mill rescue and had a lot of problems'....well imagine that, another messed up CKC registered dog.
There is legislation pending in Tennessee to attempt to stop puppy mills. These proposed bills are throwing the baby out with the bath water.
Sadly, these honest efforts will only hinder the true responsible breeder. Remember that the AKC started requiring DNA tests on dogs who were bred more than 3 times and the puppy millers couldn't prove genuine parentage(i.e. their dogs were not purebred) so the puppy millers began the CKC registration to fool the public into thinking they were buying a real purebred with papers. Someone told me that it is guesstimated that less than 10% of CKC registered dogs are truly purebred, that somewhere in their ancestry is a dog of another breed because of poor breeding practices.
Responsible dog breeders breed for a love of their chosen breed, and they do so at a financial loss,not a profit. By the time they have run all the necessary tests to have eyes and hips certified clear, checking for von Willebrands or whatever health issues may occur in their chosen breed,doing background research on the family tree, temperment testing,feeding and housing the best that money can buy, gets expensive. Therefore, NO RESPONSIBLE BREEDER IS GETTING RICH BREEDING DOGS....just puppy millers. Plus, responsible breeders keep the pups until they are around 14 weeks for physical and mental health reasons whereas a puppy miller will let a pup go at 6 weeks...and most importantly, responsible breeders don't sell to just anybody.
Since the pending legislation requires more outlaying of money for a commercial breeders license, I truly believe a number of private breeders of quality dogs simply won't bother any more...but the puppy millers will.
I am also bothered by the legislations requirement that the government decides on the moral character of the breeder before issuing a commercial license. I am not sure such things should be the governments' decision.
I do know this however, that my beloved Puff was bred by a woman who first rescued a Chin and then later became enamored of the breed and began to show as a hobby. She studied long and hard before ever breeding a litter.It took her years of study. Looking at Puff right this minute and thinking of Martin, I am saddened at the thought of Martins' suspicion of humans, his difficulty eating because of his bad bite,his crooked little legs that can't run like the wind...tears are welling up in my eyes as it is so unfair!
All dogs have the right to live a healthy life and that healthy life begins with GOOD BREEDING!!!!!!!!!
Puff has a perfect level bite and all his teeth that enables him to eat his five organic quinoa biscuits he insists on at bedtime.... we walk 45 minutes twice a day and I can barely keep up with him. In the yard he runs and jumps and twists with great joy. He has no genetic heart issues so he can exercise as long as he wishes, his eyes are as clear as a bell and remember he is over the age of ten now. His only health issue was from an injury when I fell on his back causing partial paralysis and seizures. He has no more seizures as the injury is healed and I truly believe his perfect confirmation (the result of responsible breeding) helped his back heal with no complications.
Puff is not just the result of his breeder Michelles' diligence to breed a dog close to the AKC standard, nor my diligence to feed and house him properly, but he is also the result of the MANY RESPONSIBLE BREEDERS whose dogs make up his pedigree, not only the 10 generations of National Specialty winners but the ones who didn't win Best In Show as well.
Martin,on the other hand, is the result of irresponsible breeders.
Ironically, I only paid 100 dollars for Puff. On the other hand,most people who buy Chin from puppy mills pay 500- 2000 dollars. Puffs' breeder wanted him in a good loving home and he was never meant to be made a profit from. His breeders' reward was seeing a beautiful pup in the show ring, not how many dollars she could sell him for. The 100 dollars covered his puppy immunizations. From a business standpoint she lost a lot of money producing him and his 2 sisters. I am so glad she decided to breed that litter, Puff is, without a doubt, the king of my heart, and he is healthy as he deserves to be, free from genetic mistakes. Sadly these pending bills will probably discourage great breeders like Michelle.
Folks,there is only one way to stop puppy mills and one way only. STOP BUYING FROM THEM!
And don't let this legislation pass and discourage responsible breeders. Puppy milling has been a serious problem for a long time,and time has proven that puppy millers are resilient and easily hurdle everything thrown at them. There is only way to stop them and one way only, don't buy from them.
If you want a purebred, rescue one. If you want to buy a pup, then research your breeder and get on a waiting list as most responsible breeders take reservations and only breed after they know what homes the pups will go to.
Believe me, the wait is worth it. A puppy mill pup will cost you a fortune trying to fix all its' problems..
Hop over to The Endangered Owner blog for up to date info on the breeding legislation..

It may seem contradictory, but letting legislators' know that you do oppose puppy mills but also oppose these particular bills will help keep a healthy gene pool from becoming too small,or extinct, in your favorite breed. Although I am a vegetarian and a huge supporter of animal welfare, I cannot get behind these bills. When a good bill comes along that helps responsible dog breeders while hindering the for profit breeders/puppy millers, then we can support it.
Anything less really endangers the future of dogs....