Mary Haight of Dancing Dog Blog asked bloggers who are against puppy mills to take action this weekend. She asked us to blog about Petland USA and their (IMHO ridiculous) response to our opposition to Petland USA selling dogs from breeders.
Per Mary, in a reply to her inquiry about their policies, Petland USA replied twice that they believed - are you ready for this? -
“... that animal rights people have an agenda to get rid of family pets."
Every person I know who volunteers at Wayside Waifs (the shelter where I volunteer) is passionately involved in placing animals in loving, responsible homes. We believe they are family members. So what if they happen to have four feet, fur and a tail? They're our KIDS.
This reeks of an attempt at diversion, PR sleight of hand, a sound bite they can trot out for the media inquiring about the outcry against them in places like twitter and facebook.
Speaking of facebook, Mary informs us that Petland USA has blocked all comments from protesters pertaining to this issue on every local Petland USA facebook page where the sale of breeder puppies was raised.
What will it take to get Petland USA to behave like a responsible corporate citizen???
Here is Petland USA's claim, in their emailed response to Mary's pointed questions:
“[Petland USA claims] that all of the places they get pets from are USDA approved and have no direct violations." (Mary's response to that: "they are unaware [this] does not, in fact, preclude a place from being a commercial puppy mill?")
Mary comments on how interesting it is that Petland used the phrase: 'no direct violations.'
She points out that brokers can't have direct violations since they don't keep animals, they only trade them.
Of course, the places they get animals from can certainly have them!
Mary goes on to point out that "of course because it is a franchise, Petland USA can claim the franchisees are the people contracting with puppy mills."
In case anyone reading wonders if breeder situations can really be all that bad, please click over to two of our previous posts where we interviewed the head of the rescue program at Wayside Waifs, Sarah Little. Sarah describes the very real medical issues Wayside has had to address when rescuing dogs from puppy mills. Or watch the vlog interview with Kathy Bassett, Wayside’s dog advocate, as she discusses the emotional and psychological condition of these poor dogs when they arrive at Wayside, and the lengths volunteers go to, in order to rehabilitate these poor sweet animals.
Finally, here is Mary's response to Petland USA's email – and her request of us:
“And so we have asked once again, just in case there was some kind of change happening in this corporation, to be fair – to see if Petland USA would join the 21st century and understand that cruelty to animals should not the foundation of any company. We got the answer. You can check out the call to action at change.org.”
Are you as angry about this as I am? Then please share, repost, retweet, boycott and go to change.org to sign the petition.