What Are Puppy Mills And How To Avoid Them

There is nothing better than purchasing your dog as a little puppy. It makes training them much easier as they are still young and more receptive. An added advantage, of course, is the fact that puppies are super cute and cuddly!!

Puppies are great companions and amazing pets as well. If you're a dog owner, you can attest to the amount of energy and fun a puppy can bring to your environment.

Sadly, some individuals have devised a dishonest means of selling puppies through puppy mills, so in this post, I want to break down what they are, the problems with them, and how to avoid them. There are also resources at the bottom of the post for people looking for other places to find puppies in Ottawa, just in case you're looking into getting one!

A puppy in Ottawa Ontario

What Are Puppy Mills?

A mill is a place where the manufacturing of a product occurs. Thus in simple terms, puppy mills are dog-making factories. No, the dogs are not manufactured with a machine, they are birthed normally just like every other puppy. 

These female breeds are kept for the sole purpose of giving birth to a certain number of puppies at every point in time. This is to ensure that there is always a batch of puppies available to be sold.

The Problems Around Puppy Mills

Since puppy mills produce quite a large number of puppies, some people believe that they are very important. Breeding many puppies at once is commendable but there are a few issues that make puppy mills bad:

Improper Hygiene

Puppy mills are largely unhygienic and unfit for puppies to stay in. The owners of these mills are profit-driven and do not care much for the hygiene of their breeding grounds.

Puppies are kept in cages and usually stacked on top of one another. Sometimes an outrageous number of puppies are kept in a single cage. These cages are often littered with excreta and urine which are hardly ever cleaned out.

Poor Veterinary Care/Health

From the poor hygiene conditions, you can safely deduce that the puppies' health is at stake. Exposure to their unhygienic environment makes them prone to various diseases.

The breeder dogs that birth the puppies are not even given sufficient care. So long as they birth enough puppies, then all is deemed to be well. They stand the risk of passing on their diseases to their puppies.

Socially Awkward Canines

The puppies bred in puppy mills tend to be socially awkward and find it difficult to associate with those normally bred. They are often weak, meek, and sickly in appearance. This is because they spend their entire time caged up and crammed with other puppies.

A brown sausage dog in Ottawa Ontario

How To Recognize A Puppy Mill

From all that has been listed above, it should not be difficult identifying a puppy mill. Some indicators of a puppy mill include:

  • The outrageous abundance of puppies. A puppy mill will tend to have a large number of puppies available for sale to all willing buyers. Normal breeders tend to have fewer dogs available for sale at a time.
  • The breeder has little or no knowledge of the puppy. A normal breeder knows basic information about the dog such as its personality traits, expected lifespan, average weight, height, etc.
  • There is no record of the dog's veterinary history and vaccines taken. Records of diseases that can affect the puppy are unavailable as well.
  • The establishment is not duly registered as a breeding house. No, a kennel license is not adequate registration. It can easily be issued by a local government and only allows you to have a large number of puppies.
  • The breeders avoid you visiting their facility by all means. A normal breeder will be excited to have you visit their facility and see the dogs for yourself. A puppy mill on the other hand will avoid physical contact and try to close the sale quickly.

How To Avoid A Puppy Mill

The next time you want to buy a puppy, ensure you take proper care to carry out verifications. Be sure that you are not closing a deal with a puppy mill. This is to save you from getting a defective puppy that would cause you to blow thousands of dollars at the vet.

Avoid puppy websites and 'too good to be true' newspaper ads. As much as they try to portray healthy-looking and active dogs, it could be a big sham. These sites and ads only strive to portray their business in the best light.

Also, visit the breeder and ask the right questions. Check out the facilities and the care that the dogs receive. Check out the quality of food they receive and the standard of hygiene they receive. The breeder will give you adequate information on your puppy and its care.

Another thing to do to avoid puppy mills is to adopt dogs from a dog shelter. In a shelter, you can be sure that the owners are keen on the welfare of the dog and strive to sell it to the best caregiver available.

A small white puppy in Ottawa Ontario

Alternative Places to Look For A Puppy In Ottawa Ontario

Rather than getting a dog from one of the over seven hundred puppy mills in the state of Ontario, you should consider getting your next puppy from any of the registered puppy breeders in the city. You can also check out some dog rescue centers near you, and check out my blog post on how to find the best rescue for you.

Some organizations that come highly recommended are  B.a.r.k, Healthy Pet HQ, and Ottawa Dog Rescue. There are so many other amazing options with the cutest puppies available for you.

Owning a puppy comes with great requirements for their care and growth. They are a bundle of excitement and activity and tend to bring you so much joy. They will eventually grow up to be the best buds you can think of. 

This can only be possible if you get a dog that has been properly bred from the start. Puppy mills churn out dogs that are not in the best condition and cause you to make unplanned expenses. I strongly recommend avoiding them at all costs.

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