Don’t Buy the Lie

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 Think I’m cute? Meet my mother.

Online puppy advertisements only tell you part of the story. The internet is a 24-7 unmonitored marketplace and online puppy sales by online puppy mills are skyrocketing. It is estimated that more than 1,000,000 puppies will be sold online in 2020.

Responsible breeders want to know and meet you. If a breeder is willing to sell you a puppy without meeting you, beware. If the breeder is mostly concerned about the payment of the puppy, beware. Not only could you be supporting puppy mill cruelty by purchasing a puppy from one of these breeders but you are also opening up your family to possible future heartbreak and high medical costs.

It is in your best interest to get a puppy that is healthy and well adjusted. Due to poor breeding and the shipping and transport of puppies sold online, there is a high risk of receiving a sick puppy. Sick dogs and dogs with behavior issues will affect your family for the rest of the dog’s life. Families can be faced with potential high vet bills, little recourse and tough decisions regarding their new puppy. Dogs taken away from their mothers too young can have anxiety. Shipping and transport at young ages can also cause lifelong anxiety in pups. Puppies sold on the internet and social media pages, sight unseen, are usually from puppy mills. If you don’t see it for yourself, there is no way of knowing where your puppy was born. It’s important to inspect the living conditions of the dogs as well as meeting the mother dog and puppy before you buy. Be aware of breeders that keep dogs caged in out buildings or won’t let you see their property.

Buyer Tips:
Plain and simple! Never buy a puppy online, sight unseen. It is important to do your homework, meet the mother dog and visit the home where your puppy was born. Listen to your gut. If you feel something does not seem right with the breeder or the facility walk away. Sick dogs or dogs with behavior issues will affect your family for the rest of the dog’s life. It’s in your best interest to see for yourself where your puppy was born.

Red Flags
The following are red flags and reasons not to trust an online breeder.
As we said, if you don’t see for yourself, there is no way of knowing where your puppy was born.
• If something does not seem right, it probably isn’t.
Is the online breeder located in another state?
• Does the online breeder want to meet you at a hotel or rest area?
• If you are not allowed to meet the breeding parents or view the home or facility, run in the opposite direction. The breeder most likely has something to hide. Don’t let them tell you they don’t want visitors due to keeping their kennels clean. Responsible breeders are more than willing to show you where they raise their dogs. They have nothing to hide.
• Never buy a puppy without meeting the mother dog. It is very important to see where and how the dogs are raised. Photos are not enough and can be used to deceive buyers.
• Is the online breeder selling puppies through a website where other online breeders also list puppies for sale? We call these websites puppy broker websites.
• Is the online breeder willing to sell and ship a puppy to you without meeting you in person?
• Does the online breeder have a constant flow of litters being born?
• Does the online breeder offer many different breeds of puppies for sale?
• Is the online breeder more concerned about the money and payment arrangements?
• Is the online breeder selling puppies younger than 8 weeks old?
• Is the online breeder asking for payment via a credit card, cash or an online service such as Paypal or Western Union?
• Is the online breeder offering to ship the dog overnight or via ground transport? If so, ask about the route the puppy will take to get to you. Often they are picked up at the breeder’s facility by a trucking company, trucked to a puppy distribution center in Missouri, such as Pet Ex, where they are warehoused with little care. Shipping to the final destination….their new home, could be hours or even days. Dogs often get sick or have severe anxiety that you will have to deal with for the rest of the dog’s life. Simply put, don’t do this to the puppy.

Finally, do a Google/internet search on the breeder to see if there are complaints. Ask for references.

Buying puppies from online puppy mill breeders is very risky. You don’t want to support animal cruelty by sentencing breeding dogs to a life of pain, suffering and the misery of living in a cage as a puppy mill breeding dog. Secondly, the puppy you purchase may be sick or have genetic and or behavioral issues from poor breeding. It is ultimately you and your family that will pay in every way. #see4yourself

Use the internet to do your homework before adding a new family member to your home. We suggest you also visit www.pupquest.org before you consider buying a puppy online. Never buy an animal without seeing where and how it was raised…in person. A photo can be very deceptive and should not be considered proof of anything.