|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]
SYS-CON Events announced today that Men & Mice, the leading global provider of DNS, DHCP and IP address management overlay solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. The Men & Mice Suite overlay solution is already known for its powerful application in heterogeneous operating environments, enabling enterprises to scale without fuss. Building on a solid range of diverse platform support,...
Apr. 29, 2016 11:45 AM EDT Reads: 2,186
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Klein, CEO and Co-founder of Rachio, will discuss next generation communities that are using IoT to create more sustainable, intelligent communities. One example is Sterling Ranch, a 10,000 home development that – with the help of Siemens – will integrate IoT technology into the community to provide residents with energy and water savings as well as intelligent security. Everything from stop lights to sprinkler systems to building infrastructures will run ef...
Apr. 29, 2016 11:30 AM EDT Reads: 433
You deployed your app with the Bluemix PaaS and it's gaining some serious traction, so it's time to make some tweaks. Did you design your application in a way that it can scale in the cloud? Were you even thinking about the cloud when you built the app? If not, chances are your app is going to break. Check out this webcast to learn various techniques for designing applications that will scale successfully in Bluemix, for the confidence you need to take your apps to the next level and beyond.
Apr. 29, 2016 11:15 AM EDT Reads: 1,400
Manufacturers are embracing the Industrial Internet the same way consumers are leveraging Fitbits – to improve overall health and wellness. Both can provide consistent measurement, visibility, and suggest performance improvements customized to help reach goals. Fitbit users can view real-time data and make adjustments to increase their activity. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mark Bernardo Professional Services Leader, Americas, at GE Digital, will discuss how leveraging the Industrial Interne...
Apr. 29, 2016 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,095
Whether your IoT service is connecting cars, homes, appliances, wearable, cameras or other devices, one question hangs in the balance – how do you actually make money from this service? The ability to turn your IoT service into profit requires the ability to create a monetization strategy that is flexible, scalable and working for you in real-time. It must be a transparent, smoothly implemented strategy that all stakeholders – from customers to the board – will be able to understand and comprehe...
Apr. 29, 2016 09:30 AM EDT Reads: 966
Increasing IoT connectivity is forcing enterprises to find elegant solutions to organize and visualize all incoming data from these connected devices with re-configurable dashboard widgets to effectively allow rapid decision-making for everything from immediate actions in tactical situations to strategic analysis and reporting. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Shikhir Singh, Senior Developer Relations Manager at Sencha, will discuss how to create HTML5 dashboards that interact with IoT devic...
Apr. 29, 2016 09:00 AM EDT Reads: 795
The increasing popularity of the Internet of Things necessitates that our physical and cognitive relationship with wearable technology will change rapidly in the near future. This advent means logging has become a thing of the past. Before, it was on us to track our own data, but now that data is automatically available. What does this mean for mHealth and the "connected" body? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Lisa Calkins, CEO and co-founder of Amadeus Consulting, will discuss the impact of wea...
Apr. 29, 2016 08:45 AM EDT Reads: 575
There is an ever-growing explosion of new devices that are connected to the Internet using “cloud” solutions. This rapid growth is creating a massive new demand for efficient access to data. And it’s not just about connecting to that data anymore. This new demand is bringing new issues and challenges and it is important for companies to scale for the coming growth. And with that scaling comes the need for greater security, gathering and data analysis, storage, connectivity and, of course, the...
Apr. 29, 2016 08:45 AM EDT Reads: 572
Digital payments using wearable devices such as smart watches, fitness trackers, and payment wristbands are an increasing area of focus for industry participants, and consumer acceptance from early trials and deployments has encouraged some of the biggest names in technology and banking to continue their push to drive growth in this nascent market. Wearable payment systems may utilize near field communication (NFC), radio frequency identification (RFID), or quick response (QR) codes and barcodes...
Apr. 29, 2016 08:30 AM EDT Reads: 574
SYS-CON Events announced today that DatacenterDynamics has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. DatacenterDynamics is a brand of DCD Group, a global B2B media and publishing company that develops products to help senior professionals in the world's most ICT dependent organizations make risk-based infrastructure and capacity decisions.
Apr. 29, 2016 05:45 AM EDT Reads: 2,403
SYS-CON Events announced today TMCnet has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Technology Marketing Corporation (TMC) is the world's leading business-to-business and integrated marketing media company, servicing niche markets within the com...
Apr. 29, 2016 04:45 AM EDT Reads: 2,344
The IoT has the potential to create a renaissance of manufacturing in the US and elsewhere. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Florent Solt, CTO and chief architect of Netvibes, will discuss how the expected exponential increase in the amount of data that will be processed, transported, stored, and accessed means there will be a huge demand for smart technologies to deliver it. Florent Solt is the CTO and chief architect of Netvibes. Prior to joining Netvibes in 2007, he co-founded Rift Technol...
Apr. 28, 2016 07:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,487
Join IBM June 8 at 18th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and learn how to innovate like a startup and scale for the enterprise. You need to deliver quality applications faster and cheaper, attract and retain customers with an engaging experience across devices, and seamlessly integrate your enterprise systems. And you can't take 12 months to do it.
Apr. 28, 2016 04:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,740
This is not a small hotel event. It is also not a big vendor party where politicians and entertainers are more important than real content. This is Cloud Expo, the world's longest-running conference and exhibition focused on Cloud Computing and all that it entails. If you want serious presentations and valuable insight about Cloud Computing for three straight days, then register now for Cloud Expo.
Apr. 28, 2016 04:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,628
IoT device adoption is growing at staggering rates, and with it comes opportunity for developers to meet consumer demand for an ever more connected world. Wireless communication is the key part of the encompassing components of any IoT device. Wireless connectivity enhances the device utility at the expense of ease of use and deployment challenges. Since connectivity is fundamental for IoT device development, engineers must understand how to overcome the hurdles inherent in incorporating multipl...
Apr. 28, 2016 02:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,374
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, will discuss how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to im...
Apr. 28, 2016 02:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,568
The paradigm has shifted. A Gartner survey shows that 43% of organizations are using or plan to implement the Internet of Things in 2016. However, not just a handful of companies are still using the old-style ad-hoc trial-and-error ways, unaware of the critical barriers, paint points, traps, and hidden roadblocks. How can you become a winner? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tony Shan will present a methodical approach to guide the holistic adoption and enablement of IoT implementations. This ov...
Apr. 28, 2016 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,514
SYS-CON Events announced today that Stratoscale, the software company developing the next generation data center operating system, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Stratoscale is revolutionizing the data center with a zero-to-cloud-in-minutes solution. With Stratoscale’s hardware-agnostic, Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) solution to store everything, run anything and scale everywhere...
Apr. 28, 2016 12:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,465
Angular 2 is a complete re-write of the popular framework AngularJS. Programming in Angular 2 is greatly simplified – now it's a component-based well-performing framework. This immersive one-day workshop at 18th Cloud Expo, led by Yakov Fain, a Java Champion and a co-founder of the IT consultancy Farata Systems and the product company SuranceBay, will provide you with everything you wanted to know about Angular 2.
Apr. 28, 2016 12:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,615
So, you bought into the current machine learning craze and went on to collect millions/billions of records from this promising new data source. Now, what do you do with them? Too often, the abundance of data quickly turns into an abundance of problems. How do you extract that "magic essence" from your data without falling into the common pitfalls? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Natalia Ponomareva, Software Engineer at Google, will provide tips on how to be successful in large scale machine lear...
Apr. 28, 2016 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 733