In an earlier post, I discussed the case of the inconvenient Katrina pit bulls that "went away" when BF paid a criminal posing as a dog trainer to tell them what their donors wanted to hear.
One of Don Chambers' ethical lapses was breeding "designer" mongrels and then offering them for
Now Best Friends is back at it, endorsing the same scheme in its storefront manifestation.
Seems they've been picketing pet stores that sell puppies in Los Angeles, with the goal of shutting them down or persuading them to stop selling puppies. Well hoo-feckin-ray! A fine idea. Go to it. Drive 'em all out of business. A pet store is no place to buy a puppy, and a goal of everyone who cares about animal welfare should be to make the dealers for the puppymill industry dry up and blow away. Right?
From Best Friends' own press release:
Best Friends has been hard at work to find an alternative, and collaborated with Woof Worx (formerly Pets of Bel Air) on the idea to sell wonderful, healthy, purebred puppies that come from local shelters. For a mere fraction of what it would cost at a traditional pet store, people can adopt one (or more) of these dogs, support a business that’s doing the right thing, and save a life.
We are meant to believe that this is a transparent account of a viable business model.
That in Los Angeles, there are so many "wonderful, healthy, purebred puppies" stacked in bulging cages at the shelters, that it is not only okay, but commendable, for a chichi for-profit pet store to somehow acquire them and sell them in its storefront?
Puppies mind you. Purebred puppies.
And we know they are wonderful and healthy how ...?
The usual way to verify the wonderfulness and health of a purebred puppy is to visit the home of the puppy's doting breeder, and meet her vigorous and exemplary parents.
Pups acquired from shelters are typically mixed breed, may not be in the best of health vis-a-vis parasites, nutrition, and infectious disease (almost all stuff that can be fixed, most of the time) and are much more of a gamble in terms of their potential for whatever wonderfulness the owner requires. All of which is fine, and no reason most people who are looking for a buddy and family pet can't get a great one at a shelter and justifiably feel that they are performing a mitzvah by doing so.
So where are these shelter-refugee purebred puppies coming from?
Are they individuals cherry-picked from shelter populations, hooked out of the adoption pool, declared "purebred," then marked up for sale?
Will a campaign of humane raids (and "humane" raids) on breeders provide a supply of puppies for sale?
Or are the "shelters" something else entirely -- maybe a breeder puppymiller who calls him or herself a "rescue?"
From the consumer's self-interested standpoint, doesn't matter. Any pups that end up in the "indoor dog park" at this boutique will have come from puppymills -- they'll have all the deficiencies of the same pup sold at Petland, plus maybe more time in a stressful, disease-ridden kennel environment.
Puppymill puppies go in one end, come out the other as politically correct "rescue."