|By John Savageau||
|January 7, 2013 10:24 PM EST||
Editor’s Note: This is part two in a series looking at the controversial topic of “Puppy Mills” and the attempt to ban the sale of the animals in Burbank, which will be taken up by the City Council possibly in late January. Originally published by author in BurbankNBeyond.
In January the City of Burbank will again engage in discussion on whether or not to follow 12 other California cities, including Glendale, Hermosa Beach, Irvine, Los Angeles, and others in both LA and Orange Counties, in banning the sale of pets in retail businesses, including pet shops.
The question many ask is simply, “why?”
There is no simple answer. However contributing justification includes:
- Alleged sadistic treatment of breeding animals and litters at commercial breeders – primarily in mid-western states, through the logistics process delivering animals to retail pet stores
- High number of available rescue dogs, either abandoned or surrendered to an animal shelter or rescue, and subsequent need to euthanize animals which can no longer be housed at shelters due to excessive numbers
- Danger of “in-breeding” by incompetent or unethical breeders
- Obsolete laws and ordinances protecting the safety and welfare of animals
Part 2 of the series “Burbank Takes on Puppy Mills” will focus on the position of animal rights groups, shelters, and adoption agencies and their views on the above topics. Future articles in the series will try to dig further into the perspectives of pet shop owners, and city council members preparing to weigh in on the issue.
“A pet store that closes its doors is a lost opportunity for shelter animals.” (Elizabeth Oreck)
According to the American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) a puppy mill is a ”large-scale commercial dog breeding operation that places profit over the well-being of its dogs—who are often severely neglected—and acts without regard to responsible breeding practices.”
The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) states there are an estimated 10,000 puppy mills in America, producing more than 2,000,000 puppies for distribution throughout the United States. USUS also notes there are up to 3,000,000 animals euthanized at shelters annually.
No-Kill Los Angeles, an initiative of the Best Friends Animal Society, states 56,121 animals entered LA city shelters in 2011. More than 17,000 of those animals were euthanized.
Horrible numbers. Nobody wants to see or think about such a waste of life, and the thought a family pet could come to such an end. This is the reason animal rights groups such as Burbank CROPS (Citizens for Rescue-Only Pet Stores) and the Best Friends Animal Society are engaged not only in trying to save the lives of animals, but also in preventing the cruelty inflicted on both breeding stock and puppies (this article will focus on puppies, however the same issue applies to cats, birds, and other animals as well).
The Real Problem
Animal right groups, such as Burbank CROPS, do not want to shut down pet stores, as Shelly Rizzotti, Burbank CROPS member explains, they simply want to prevent pet stores from selling or distributing commercially bred “puppy mill” dogs.
No group has an objection to people buying pure bred puppies – from responsible hobby breeders or individuals. According to Elizabeth Oreck, National Manager of Puppy Mill Initiatives for the Best Friends Animal Society, those sources will normally screen and vet prospective buyers or adopters prior to allowing an animal to join the adopting family.
Responsible breeders will follow a code of ethics, which includes a very detailed set of guidelines for breeding animals. There are representative specific breeds ranging from the Mountain Dog Association, German Shepard Dog Club, Great Dane Club of America, Golden Retriever Club of America, to the Yorkshire Terrier Club of America and all breeds in between. A standard clause in all the codes of ethics includes a statement similar to:
Breeders shall not knowingly sell to dog wholesalers, retailers or pet stores, known or suspected puppy mills, or commercial breeders. Breeders shall not donate dogs or puppies as prizes nor knowingly allow any dogs of their breeding to fall into public trust. All advertisement of puppies and dogs, written or oral shall be factual and as forthright and honest as possible in both substance and implication. (Mountain Dog Association).
Anne Gaffney, owner of Burbank’s Pet Haven, goes even further. She notes that “with all the rescue animals available, people should give those animals the first chance.“ Gaffney continued ”adopting a pet is all about the connection. You cannot buy a connection, and it is possible the connection between you and a pet may have nothing to do with the breed.”
Laws Regulating Commercial Breeders
There are many laws and codes regulating commercial breeders, including federal, state, and local. At the top of the regulatory structure is the federal Animal Welfare Act (AWA), which dates back to 1966. The US Department of Agriculture website states the AWA regulates the treatment of animals in research, exhibition, transport, and by dealers. The Animal Welfare Act (AWA) requires that minimum standards of care and treatment be provided for certain animals bred for commercial sale, used in research, transported commercially, or exhibited to the public.
California has additional regulations including the Pet Store Animal Care Act, Pet Protection Act, Breeder Warranty Act, and according to a City of Burbank Study dated 16 October 2012, more than 50 other laws dealing with mistreatment of animals.
The Burbank Municipal Code, Title 5, Article 14 (Pet Shops), provides very specific guidelines on how pet shops must care for animals. Officers from the Burbank Animal Shelter do perform periodic inspections, and according to Brenda Castaneda, Burbank Animal Shelter Superintendent, will cite violators for offenses.
An existing loophole in the regulatory environment surrounds the sale of puppies over the Internet. This issue is being addressed by both congress and the senate at the federal level (HR835/S707), however the issue has not yet been solved, and as of today there is little or no regulation on the sale of commercially bred puppies over the Internet.
It should be noted that animal shelters and rescues are not required to comply with all laws and codes which regulate pet shops and commercial breeders, although all shelters are subject to inspection to ensure the health and safety of resident animals.
The Road Puppies Travel to Burbank Pet Stores
Puppies finding their way to pet stores will normally be bred in a commercial environment in the mid-west, primarily in Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, or surprisingly Amish communities in Ohio and Pennsylvania. Puppies are delivered at around 6~7 weeks old by the breeder to a distribution or logistics company, such as the Hunte Company, based in Goodman, Missouri.
Hunte collects animals in their Missouri facility during the course of a week, during which time there will be health screening and matching pet shop demand with available stock. A truck loaded with puppies will then head out across the country, delivering puppies to pet stores, including those in California.
The trip can take several days, during which time the puppies remain in cages, being fed and checked by delivery staff along the route.
A company such as Hunte will deliver an order to a pet shop, and the pet owner will inspect the animals, and either accept or reject the animal at the point of delivery. If the pet passes arrival inspection, the pet store will settle with the delivery company, and then process the animal locally, sometimes passing through a veterinarian on the way to display in the store.
By the time a puppy hits the display cage, it is normally around 8 weeks old, having been away from its mother for about 2 weeks.
According to Christy Shilling, a CROPS member, the issue is “black and white.” Shilling continued “This is about factory farming of mill animals. Those terms are synonymous, of puppy mills, of puppy farms mass-producing animals. It is cruel, and they do have violations. That’s what we’d like to stop. It’s not about attacking one store, but it is about attacking the mills.”
The goal of CROPS is to educate the public, and ultimately of course to stop the practice of puppy mills and retail sales of mill animals altogether.
A Model for the Future
None of the rights groups or individuals interviewed wants to prevent families from adding a pet to their family. Pets have been part of social and family units since the beginning of recorded history, and it is a healthy relationship.
Rizzotti paints a model where pet stores may still provide pets to their customers, as adoption outlets for rescue animals. In most cases the business model for a pet store is not in pushing flesh, but rather in selling pet supplies such as feed, toys, and environments.
Rizzotti explains there are still ample pure bred animals available through rescues, including puppies. As noted, there are breeding clubs and organizations for nearly all types of breeds, all with a strict code of how they raise, handle, and sell puppies.
An example search on the website breeders.net revealed three Yorkshire Terrier breeders within 10 miles of Burbank’s 91501 zip code. One breeder listed, who asked to remain anonymous, has the following splash on the website: Adorable tiny male puppies, AKC, 1st shots, Champion Bloodlines, great personalities available to good homes. No Agents, No Pet Shops, & No Brokers, NO SHIPPING.
In a phone conversation with the breeder she passionately explained that her dogs only were only available to buyers she personally screened, and the transfer required a list of steps, including full papers, shot record, visit to a veterinarian prior to accepting the puppy. The breeder is a member of the American Kennel Club (AKC), and claims complete adherence to AKC
The American Kennel Club has an investigations and inspections program to both ensure the health and safety of animals within member kennels, as well as checking paperwork for compliance with club standards. Field agents may also conduct DNA testing on dogs to verify the pedigree and parentage of puppies.
While the AKC inspection process has no penal or regulatory authority, if a kennel or breeder has major deficiencies during an inspection, they may lose their membership in the AKC, be fined, or in a worst case the AKC may contact law enforcement to ensure the animals are protected.
What Do Animal Rights Groups Want from Burbank?
Rizzotti is very clear about the objectives Burbank CROPS wishes to accomplish in the upcoming Burbank City Council discussion on pet stores and puppy mills. That is to support elimination of puppy mills, and prevent pet stores from selling commercially bred animals originating in puppy mills.
Part 3 of this series will explore the perspective of pet store owners selling puppies, and others who do not support the position of animal rights groups on the topics of commercial breeding and pet store sales.
BurbankNBeyond and Pacific-Tier Communications would like to hear from all readers on the topic, regardless of your position. Please send your comments to [email protected]
Consumer IoT applications provide data about the user that just doesn’t exist in traditional PC or mobile web applications. This rich data, or “context,” enables the highly personalized consumer experiences that characterize many consumer IoT apps. This same data is also providing brands with unprecedented insight into how their connected products are being used, while, at the same time, powering highly targeted engagement and marketing opportunities. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nathan Treloar, President and COO of Bebaio, will explore examples of brands transforming their businesses by t...
Aug. 29, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 194
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pythian, a global IT services company specializing in helping companies leverage disruptive technologies to optimize revenue-generating systems, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Founded in 1997, Pythian is a global IT services company that helps companies compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as cloud, Big Data, advanced analytics, and DevOps to advance innovation and increase agility. Specializing in designing, imple...
Aug. 29, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 229
While many app developers are comfortable building apps for the smartphone, there is a whole new world out there. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Narayan Sainaney, Co-founder and CTO of Mojio, will discuss how the business case for connected car apps is growing and, with open platform companies having already done the heavy lifting, there really is no barrier to entry.
Aug. 29, 2015 10:30 AM EDT
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
Aug. 29, 2015 10:15 AM EDT Reads: 417
SYS-CON Events announced today that HPM Networks will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For 20 years, HPM Networks has been integrating technology solutions that solve complex business challenges. HPM Networks has designed solutions for both SMB and enterprise customers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
Aug. 29, 2015 09:30 AM EDT Reads: 842
Through WebRTC, audio and video communications are being embedded more easily than ever into applications, helping carriers, enterprises and independent software vendors deliver greater functionality to their end users. With today’s business world increasingly focused on outcomes, users’ growing calls for ease of use, and businesses craving smarter, tighter integration, what’s the next step in delivering a richer, more immersive experience? That richer, more fully integrated experience comes about through a Communications Platform as a Service which allows for messaging, screen sharing, video...
Aug. 29, 2015 08:45 AM EDT Reads: 576
SYS-CON Events announced today that Micron Technology, Inc., a global leader in advanced semiconductor systems, will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Micron’s broad portfolio of high-performance memory technologies – including DRAM, NAND and NOR Flash – is the basis for solid state drives, modules, multichip packages and other system solutions. Backed by more than 35 years of technology leadership, Micron's memory solutions enable the world's most innovative computing, consumer,...
Aug. 29, 2015 08:45 AM EDT Reads: 178
As more intelligent IoT applications shift into gear, they’re merging into the ever-increasing traffic flow of the Internet. It won’t be long before we experience bottlenecks, as IoT traffic peaks during rush hours. Organizations that are unprepared will find themselves by the side of the road unable to cross back into the fast lane. As billions of new devices begin to communicate and exchange data – will your infrastructure be scalable enough to handle this new interconnected world?
Aug. 29, 2015 07:45 AM EDT Reads: 129
As more and more data is generated from a variety of connected devices, the need to get insights from this data and predict future behavior and trends is increasingly essential for businesses. Real-time stream processing is needed in a variety of different industries such as Manufacturing, Oil and Gas, Automobile, Finance, Online Retail, Smart Grids, and Healthcare. Azure Stream Analytics is a fully managed distributed stream computation service that provides low latency, scalable processing of streaming data in the cloud with an enterprise grade SLA. It features built-in integration with Azur...
Aug. 28, 2015 07:45 PM EDT Reads: 194
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
Aug. 28, 2015 06:00 PM EDT Reads: 321
With the proliferation of connected devices underpinning new Internet of Things systems, Brandon Schulz, Director of Luxoft IoT – Retail, will be looking at the transformation of the retail customer experience in brick and mortar stores in his session at @ThingsExpo. Questions he will address include: Will beacons drop to the wayside like QR codes, or be a proximity-based profit driver? How will the customer experience change in stores of all types when everything can be instrumented and analyzed? As an area of investment, how might a retail company move towards an innovation methodolo...
Aug. 28, 2015 05:30 PM EDT Reads: 412
A producer of the first smartphones and tablets, presenter Lee M. Williams will talk about how he is now applying his experience in mobile technology to the design and development of the next generation of Environmental and Sustainability Services at ETwater. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Lee Williams, COO of ETwater, will talk about how he is now applying his experience in mobile technology to the design and development of the next generation of Environmental and Sustainability Services at ETwater.
Aug. 28, 2015 02:00 PM EDT
SYS-CON Events announced today that IceWarp will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IceWarp, the leader of cloud and on-premise messaging, delivers secured email, chat, documents, conferencing and collaboration to today's mobile workforce, all in one unified interface
Aug. 28, 2015 03:00 AM EDT Reads: 363
The Internet of Things (IoT) is about the digitization of physical assets including sensors, devices, machines, gateways, and the network. It creates possibilities for significant value creation and new revenue generating business models via data democratization and ubiquitous analytics across IoT networks. The explosion of data in all forms in IoT requires a more robust and broader lens in order to enable smarter timely actions and better outcomes. Business operations become the key driver of IoT applications and projects. Business operations, IT, and data scientists need advanced analytics t...
Aug. 28, 2015 12:30 AM EDT Reads: 361
Akana has announced the availability of the new Akana Healthcare Solution. The API-driven solution helps healthcare organizations accelerate their transition to being secure, digitally interoperable businesses. It leverages the Health Level Seven International Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (HL7 FHIR) standard to enable broader business use of medical data. Akana developed the Healthcare Solution in response to healthcare businesses that want to increase electronic, multi-device access to health records while reducing operating costs and complying with government regulations.
Aug. 26, 2015 07:00 AM EDT Reads: 118
For IoT to grow as quickly as analyst firms’ project, a lot is going to fall on developers to quickly bring applications to market. But the lack of a standard development platform threatens to slow growth and make application development more time consuming and costly, much like we’ve seen in the mobile space. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mike Weiner, Product Manager of the Omega DevCloud with KORE Telematics Inc., discussed the evolving requirements for developers as IoT matures and conducted a live demonstration of how quickly application development can happen when the need to comply wit...
Aug. 2, 2015 11:15 AM EDT Reads: 547
The Internet of Everything (IoE) brings together people, process, data and things to make networked connections more relevant and valuable than ever before – transforming information into knowledge and knowledge into wisdom. IoE creates new capabilities, richer experiences, and unprecedented opportunities to improve business and government operations, decision making and mission support capabilities.
Aug. 1, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 477
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In his session at @ThingsExpo, James Kirkland, Red Hat's Chief Architect for the Internet of Things and Intelligent Systems, described how to revolutionize your archit...
Jul. 30, 2015 07:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,561
MuleSoft has announced the findings of its 2015 Connectivity Benchmark Report on the adoption and business impact of APIs. The findings suggest traditional businesses are quickly evolving into "composable enterprises" built out of hundreds of connected software services, applications and devices. Most are embracing the Internet of Things (IoT) and microservices technologies like Docker. A majority are integrating wearables, like smart watches, and more than half plan to generate revenue with APIs within the next year.
Jul. 30, 2015 02:30 PM EDT Reads: 277
Growth hacking is common for startups to make unheard-of progress in building their business. Career Hacks can help Geek Girls and those who support them (yes, that's you too, Dad!) to excel in this typically male-dominated world. Get ready to learn the facts: Is there a bias against women in the tech / developer communities? Why are women 50% of the workforce, but hold only 24% of the STEM or IT positions? Some beginnings of what to do about it! In her Opening Keynote at 16th Cloud Expo, Sandy Carter, IBM General Manager Cloud Ecosystem and Developers, and a Social Business Evangelist, d...
Jul. 30, 2015 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,220