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by Joan Reddy
Categories: Animals, Causes, People.

The non-profit, no-kill organization National Mill Dog Rescue, (NMDR), recently rescued seventy-five surrendered breeding dogs from multiple puppy mills in Kansas and Missouri.

National Mill Dog Rescue is a Colorado Springs based organization that “rescues, rehabilitates, and re-homes discarded commercial breeding dogs from puppy mills.” NMDR says that they rely on “volunteers to care for the dogs, from the moment they are surrendered to the time they are adopted and beyond. They depend on the generosity of the public to provide the high level of care they do for the dogs and to continue to be able to save them.” From the time NMDR formed their organization, up until the present time, they have “rescued over 8,600 puppy mill survivors.”

Every year, millions of puppies are born into horrific conditions and sold to unsuspecting people who purchase their new family member from pet shops or over the Internet. Most of the animals that are bought from these locations come from extremely cruel breeding places known as puppy mills. Puppy mills are mass-breeding facilities that raise puppies for the pet trade with an emphasis on profit over welfare.

Dogs from puppy mills are shipped to pet stores and sold to Internet buyers across the country so that consumers never have a chance to witness the real conditions in which these dogs were born or raised. Puppy mill dogs that are used for breeding are removed from having a chance at any real quality of life and often continually reside in small wire cages with little or no personal attention, exercise, or veterinary care. Many of these breeding dogs and their puppies are injured and sick – but are never awarded any veterinary care. The breeding dogs spend their entire lives pregnant and delivering babies until finally they are too old, or develop medical conditions.

Most puppy mill facilities do not have access to heat in the winter or air conditioning in the summer, as this would be too costly to the mill operator. The dogs are never taken out of their tiny, cramped, and filthy cages, and as a result they often suffer emotional and psychological problems. They are constantly in a state of discomfort, pain, boredom and anxiety. In many cases when the animals become sick or injured the mill operators will often perform surgeries on these animals without a veterinary license. In very rare cases, some of the lucky ones are given to animal rescue groups, but usually the unwanted dogs are shot and killed.

There are millions of dogs being euthanized in shelters and pounds every year because there are simply not enough homes. The safest and most humane way to adopt a dog or a puppy is from a shelter, pound, or rescue group. Do not buy puppies from pet stores, off an Internet website, or a farm, as they are more than likely products of a puppy mill. Purchasing an animal from these places is ultimately contributing to the support of their inhumane practices, methods, and facilities.

Thirty of the dogs recently rescued by National Mill Dog Rescue, were transferred to Arizona Animal Welfare League & APCA, (AAWL & SPCA), the largest and oldest no-kill shelter in Phoenix, Arizona, where they will be cared for and seek out permanent homes. Theresa Strader, founder and executive director of NMDR, had this to say about their recent rescue operation: “With the support of our community, other rescue groups and our volunteers, we were able to save many lives and give these dogs a chance for a life outside of the cage.” The dogs will now receive the veterinary care and socialization they desperately need, until they are ready to be adopted into their ‘forever’ homes.

These rescued dogs had never walked on the ground in their entire lives until this weekend.  The rescuers took a video of the dogs’ very first moments when their little feet first touched the earth. NMDR wrote about the footage on Facebook, saying: “[j]ust moments ago our rescue team arrived at Arizona Animal Welfare League & SPCA with precious cargo on board … 30 of the puppy mill dogs we had rescued this past weekend. We just received this heartwarming video of their very first moments on the ground, experiencing the joy of freedom. They look pretty happy, wouldn’t you agree?”

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

About Joan Reddy

Joan Reddy is a professional photographer, writer, animal rights activist, and environmentalist. Joan holds a Masters degree in English Literature from the University of Toronto, and a Masters of Environmental Studies from York University, in Toronto, where her thesis focused on Animal Rights. Through her writing, Joan wants to help to educate the public about the way animals are abused and exploited, in cultures around the world. Joan is also founder and president of the Federal registered non-profit organization "International Communication for Animal Justice." Her organization's website can be found at www.internationalcommunicationforanimaljustice.org, and her professional profile on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/pub/joan-reddy/22/999/449.

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  • ishkabibul

    We read of the horrible -filthy conditions that these poor little dogs have to live in why can’t these greedy-money hungry people who run these puppy farms – give these little dogs a clean kennel -good food etc when they make so much money from their little bodies -why is it so hard to do?it would be for their own benefit to see they were kept healthy -are these places checked regularly by animal inspectors ?-if not -why not?-books should be kept on how many times they breed a year -are there any -good puppy farms?-haven’t head of any.

    • lars1701c

      I am fighting a pet store owned by the amish that use puppy mills, the amish are big users of puppy mills which shocked me when i learned of it considering how “Christian” they are supposed to be. :(

      • Barbara

        The Amish abuse and beat the same horses that plow their fiends and are hooked up to their buggies! No, they are not that Christian !!!

      • Linda Anderson

        I was shocked to hear about how the Amish abuse animals too. They regard them as nothing more than property. I have to agree…the behavior they show towards animals is definitely not Christian. They are cruel beyond belief!

  • Fenria

    Puppy mills need to simply be outlawed already. Period.

  • michelle

    My first two mill dogs were terrified of grass. One didn’t bark for 6 months. We thought she had been de-barked. We spent thousands on medical expenses. All well spent.

    The most recent one was frozen in a fetal position for two weeks. We had no way to give positive reinforcement. He was so shut down he wouldn’t accept treats as reward. Anytime we touched him or looked at him directly was like a blow. He would just stare at us whale eyed and hyper vigilant for months. We had to keep a leash on him for a year (for his safety) so that we could vet him or take him outside. His first breakthrough came when we adopted a (little shit) chihuahua. She would take his leash and lead him all around the house & up onto the couch. LOL. She taught him to play & taught him to use his nose to explore the world. Mill dogs are not for everyone. Some never fully recover. IHATEPUPPYMILLS. It looks like these dogs have received at least a little socialization. They are interactive and playful.

    • lars1701c

      I could never go to these mills to rescue dogs because I would beat the snot out of the owners :(

      • Leon

        Do it then! they deserve it. and give those dogs good homes!

    • Kelli

      I volunteer at a shelter and have foster a few very shut down dogs. I always find their greatest recovery happens with my dogs and has little to do with me. My dogs teach the fosters how to be dogs. It’s a wonderful sight to behold. Thank you for rescuing the mill dogs.

  • Michael Santarella

    put them jerks in a cage for the same time as the dogs were, in dog years

  • Laurel Hartley

    Such a great video ! Please put more of these out there for us to see, the videos bring tears and smiles to us all. Bless you and the dogs !!!

  • Angie

    Were the puppy mills shut down after this rescue?

  • mcdotty

    I hate puppy mills…it is cruel to continue to breed those precious little females to support humans who really need to go off their rears and get a real job…I mean really…You are a disgusting breed of people who do this …..period.