The Hidden Suffering

What the Puppy Farming Industry doesn’t want you to see

Caged, neglected and unloved — this is the reality of over 382 000 dogs in Australia each year (Animals Australia, 2017).

Let me set the scene:

They took your bowl away days ago. Last time you scoured the floor for a drop of water you got a kick to the face. Your right eye is still bleeding but it’s okay, it could be worse — they could take them away again.

You nestle closer to your young. They suckle and cry out for you. You need to comfort them, to support them, to protect them. But you feel your body slowly giving up.

You’ve spent years within this cage. There is no light or love to be found here. It’s full of shadows, and dirt, and prying hands.

Sometimes you dream of the grass, the sky, the sun;

A warm, loving face.

As you drift in and out of consciousness, it happens again.

They grab them one by one, by the scruffs of their neck. They whimper and struggle. Their eyes are on you. They need you now more than ever.

But you have nothing left to give.

The most you can do is look up from the ground and wonder — will it still be this dark wherever they’re taking them to?

A look inside one of the many cruel puppy farms operating within Australia (Animals Australia, 2015)

So, what exactly is a puppy farm?

“Puppy farms, also known as puppy factories or puppy mills, are intense breeding facilities that churn out puppy litters for profit, often at the expense of the health and wellbeing of the animals.”
(Enriquez & Browne, 2015)

There are also a number of other welfare problems associated with puppy farms which include, but are not limited to:

  • Extreme confinement,
  • inadequate veterinary and general care,
  • unhygienic living conditions,
  • overcrowded housing conditions,
  • and long term health and behavioural issues caused by the poor conditions within which they are bred and a lack of socialisation
    (RSPCA, 2015)

Puppies from these farms may be sold via:

  • the internet
  • newspaper ads
  • markets
  • car-boot sales
  • pet shops
  • or the puppy farm itself 
    (RSPCA, 2015)

And the reality is that out of the 450 000 dogs sold within Australia each year, only around 15% of them are sold through breeders registered with Australian peak companion breeding associations (Animals Australia, 2017).

That means over 382 000 dogs each year may be experiencing the horrifying cycle of torture present within most puppy farms operating across Australia.

That’s just an injustice that we cannot tolerate any longer.

Australia is failing to protect the animals we as a nation love most. In one in three Australian households the family is not complete without a beloved dog. But they may have received very little love before they joined our families.
(Animals Australia)

We have to wake up and realise that this is what we are consenting to when we choose to buy dogs from puppy farms and mills nationwide:

But still, amidst all this despair, there is still hope

Meet Billy — a little chihuahua saved from a puppy mill and adopted by Adam, a kind-hearted activist who fell in love with him at first sight 
Watch their story here

And watch as this Yorkie, who had been caged and used for breeding his whole life, transforms before your very eyes in this heart-wrenching video.

Or see how Animals Australia, with the help of the RSPCA Victoria, freed over 150 dogs from one of the most notorious puppy mills in Australia, and saved the lives of dogs like Prudence:

What I’m really trying to say here is that there is kindness, compassion and love out there. There are people who fight day after day to save these suffering animals. They understand the issue and boycott the people and places that profit off of their misery. I believe you can too.

After all, dogs cannot speak for themselves. We are their voice. In a world where animals are treated as dispensable objects only used for human gain, we need to draw the line.

Here’s how you can help put a stop to puppy farming

Opt for Adopting —

Don’t support the puppy mills. There are thousands of dogs up for adoption who are in need of a home. If your stumped on places to visit, check out:

Know your stuff —

Do your research! If you’re keen on purchasing a dog from a breeder, make sure you find somebody who is willing to give you a tour of their premises. You need to assess the conditions within which your puppy and their parents lived. But remember, never buy your puppy off the internet or through a pet store — you’ll never be completely sure of where they came from. If you need some more guidance, take a look at this helpful chart:

(Animals Australia, 2017)

or have a read of the RSPCA’s Online Puppy Buyer’s Guide here.

Spread the word —

Puppy mills continue to exist because they are hidden from the public view. People are unaware of the issue. This is your chance to let them know. Share the following campaigns to spread the truth:

Make a change now —

If you’re looking to help out in some way but you just don’t know how, you can also:

Sign a petition against puppy farming —

Email your local Member of Parliament about the issue —

Or even pledge to adopt, not buy your next furry friend

However you choose to help, just know that you are actively making a difference in these innocent beings lives.

With people like you fighting for them, they finally have some hope to hold on to.