DO NOT BREED OR BUY, WHILE SHELTER DOGS DIE!
The Accidental Consequence of Cracking Down on Puppy Mills...A much-needed crackdown on U.S. businesses like puppy mills that breed pets purely for profit and without regard for the health and well-being of the animals, is having an unintended consequence.
Unless we get a handle on it quickly, it seems the puppy import business has the potential to become just as hideous as the puppy mill industry. Many of the tiny victims are being smuggled in from Mexico.
Any dog shipped to the U.S. requires paperwork verifying his or her age.
In the case of puppies flown into LAX, the County of Los Angeles' Department of Public Health uncovered rampant fake paperwork.
Importers have caught on to the fact that dogs four months or older can enter the U.S. without restrictions after their arrival, so dates of birth on the documents shipped with the puppies are routinely falsified to indicate the dogs are older than their actual age.
In fact, most of the pups being shipped are still too young to vaccinate.
As the number of countries importing dogs to the U.S. grows, so does the potential for outbreaks of diseases even more dangerous than parvo and distemper.
“CDC's biggest concern with these imported dogs is the risk of rabies,” says G. Gale Galland, a veterinarian with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Exacerbating the threat of rabies is the fact that most of the dogs being shipped are too young to even be vaccinated for rabies. Over the past few years, there have been a handful of cases of rabid dogs being smuggled in, but enforcement, both at border crossings and airports, is proving difficult.
Identifying Root Causes
In order to address the problem of smuggled and imported underage and sick puppies, it's necessary to understand why this activity is on the increase. There are several factors at work, including:
Better regulation of commercial breeders in the U.S. In 2009 alone, over 33 states enacted legislation intended to either clean up or close down the puppy mill industry and other unscrupulous breeders. The supply of U.S.-bred puppies available to pet stores and other pet retailers is being significantly reduced as a result.
Puppy mill owners looking to cash in on the import business. Unscrupulous breeders, whether they've downscaled their operations due to stricter regulations, or been shut down altogether, are looking for a way to replace lost income. Many of these people are becoming puppy brokers or middlemen for imported puppy mill pets.
Consumer demand for purebred and cross-bred ‘designer' puppies. Despite the public outcry against puppy mills and overwhelming approval of the new restrictive laws for commercial dog breeding operations, people in the market for canine family members are still buying from pet stores.
An even bigger problem is internet sales of puppies. Every time a potential dog owner decides, often on impulse, they simply must have a purebred Maltese puppy or some exotic hybrid blend of two or three different breeds, it has the potential to line the pockets of a puppy mill operator or importer.
Uneducated and/or impulsive consumer purchases. Many people in the market for a dog have simply not done their homework to learn the significant risks associated with purchasing either an imported puppy or a pup with unverifiable health history or lineage. Impulse purchases are almost never a good idea, but they can be especially harmful when it comes to choosing a new family pet.
Not-for-profit, misguided or uninformed importers. Rescue groups, well-meaning armed forces personnel serving overseas and even veterinarians have imported dogs from other countries without an appropriate level of concern for the health risks involved.
Weak federal import regulations. Government agencies like the U.S. Border Patrol, the CDC and the USDA don't have the staff, resources or law enforcement authority to effectively regulate the import of live animals. In addition, most of the laws governing live animals crossing U.S. borders were written during a time when the only dogs being transported into the country were pets of families returning from extended trips or business abroad.
How You Can Make a Difference
If you plan to add a new dog to your family, even if you've done your homework and know exactly what you want, I encourage you to check your local shelters and rescue organizations first. Depending on the breed you're interested in, you might be surprised to learn there are homeless purebred dogs – sometimes even puppies – available for adoption.
More at: and : http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2011/01/06/avoiding-buying-illegally-imported-pet-dogs.aspx
By: Chris Sweeney DVM NEWSMAGAZINE
"New animal health risks posed by growing, illegal dog importation:
National Report -- It’s synonymous with weapons and drugs. But the black market dog trade in the United States is vast and some believe it’s growing.
Across the U.S./Mexican border, and through the airports, a stream of illegal puppies are crossing U.S. borders. Big profits are made, important humanitarian issues ignored and significant health risks propagated with each illegal dog that is trafficked into the country.
“We have found puppies stuffed in speaker boxes, screwed into the car door panels and wrapped in blankets with their little legs taped to their bodies and stuffed under seats,” says Captain Aaron Reyes of the Southeast Animal Control Authority. “On one occasion, we found, I believe, a dozen puppies in a plastic container in the back of car. Two of the puppies had already died because of the heat, and all of the others were panting and doing severe mouth breathing. They were cooking in there, and they were about 5 weeks old.”
The Border Puppy Task Force was created soon after Reyes and colleagues set up a sting operation during which they purchased a few-week old puppy that had deadly parasitic infections.
“In late 2004, we started seeing quite a few buyers of these pocket-breed puppies coming in and saying ‘I bought this puppy, and it’s now dead, I had it for just a couple of days,’” Reyes says. “Many of these dogs are indiscriminately bred -- father and daughter, brother and sister -- and the whole idea is to keep the females pregnant and popping out puppies.” "
More at: http://veterinarynews.dvm360.com/dvm/article/articleDetail.jsp?id=662872&pagelD=1and
How much is that doggie in the window!
Puppy Mill puppies are sold online, or to pet shops, or they are auctioned off, at terrible auctions.
You can go to Petfinder.com to see pictures of local adoptable animals waiting patiently for forever homes.