The Amish are well known for fresh baked goods, hand-crafted furniture but, in the past five years, records show these communities are expanding into the profitable dog breeding business. These kennels (puppy farms) could have anywhere from 20 to 500 or more breeding dogs. Destinations for the puppies used to be pet stores but, with the internet sale of puppies skyrocketing, it is estimated there are now over a million puppies sold online each year.
In 2019, there were 407 dog breeders registered in Lancaster County housing close to 53,000 dogs. Fast forward to 2021, where with the internet sale of puppies skyrocketing, pre and post pandemic, Lancaster County now has 424 registered dog kennels housing close to 60,000 dogs.
During the pandemic, the online sale of puppies skyrocketed and it continues to soar. We are deeply concerned that the kennel inspection portion of the audit was halted because of the online sellers and large puppy broker websites that boast about selling thousands of puppies a year, from USDA dog breeders.
When signed into law by Governor J.B. Pritzker, HB1711 will amend the Illinois Animal Welfare Act to stop the sale of commercially-bred puppies and kittens in Illinois pet stores. Illinois will then be the 5th state in the country to tell pet stores and puppy mills their cruelty is no longer welcome.