By Lynn Pacifico

In an effort to stop the killing of “unwanted” pets, Gov. Hochul recently signed legislation (S.1130/A.4283) which bans the retail sale of dogs, cats, and rabbits. Yet some people advocate buying dogs from “breeders” (backyard breeders are just puppy mills with a better sounding name) out of state and flying them to New York. Not only is the weeks old puppy removed from its mother, the terrified baby is put in a box alone and flown! How could they!?!

That mill breeding parents live though horror is a well proven fact. When you buy a puppy you support this cruelty. The puppy industry leads thousands of abandoned pets to shelter kill rooms every week. Dogs, smarter than we give them credit for, resist and must be dragged to the kill room. Puppies walk in wagging their tails grateful for some attention. 1.5 million shelter animals are killed each year. If a dog is fearful, sick or injured, they can be killed without getting a chance at adoption. Our taxes pay for the capture, incarceration and execution of innocent animals, many of whom are lost family pets and full breed dogs, while breeders rake in profits.

Due to the rapidly increasing amount of abandoned dogs, and with decreasing funds and fewer traveling, rescues are in crises.

Breeders are responsible for weakening the breeds—spaniels with small skulls suffer constant migraines. Shepherds with weak joints and legs, and the short-nosed breeds whose nasal passages are so inadequate that these dogs often snore while awake and have difficulty keeping a mask on during surgery. The full breed dogs I see now are poor products, pumped onto the market for profit, with no regard for their wellbeing. Puppies, past the desirable age for sale at the breeders, are bludgeoned or drowned. Shows Local Adoptable Pets

People underestimate the time and effort needed to raise a well-behaved puppy and too many give up their pet. Adopting an older dog allows a better sense of personality and potential. Already passed the house training and teething stages, older dogs need less stimulation and exercise. If you have nice furniture, or your ideal evening is watching TV, get an older dog. Whether you buy or adopt, hire a well-regarded trainer as soon as you get your puppy and start off on the right foot. You will be able to head off behaviors before they become a problem.

Become a Pet Foster Parent

As life returns to normal, many pandemic dogs are given up and overcrowded shelters are forced to kill to make room. Local rescue groups like Posh Pets Rescue, Second Chance Rescue, and Animal Haven save dogs from NY Animal Care and Control and other shelters and need foster homes. Pup Starz Rescue travels to high-kill shelters in other cities to rescue highly adoptable pets, including puppies and kittens. (These shelters often use gas chambers where numerous animals are gassed at the same time, the bigger attacking the smaller in their panic.) Foster homes are needed to receive these animals. The fostering is short term, but it allows you to see if a potential adoptee is a good fit. If you must have a specific breed look up a rescue group that handles that breed.

To learn more read: “How the Animal Pad Rescued 111 Doodles From a Backyard Breeder, Further proof that you can—and should—adopt rescued designer dogs,” by Julie Zeilinger
International rescue organizations, like SOI Dog, send adoptable dogs to the US with travelers. Due to the rapidly increasing number of abandoned dogs, and with decreasing funds and fewer traveling, rescues are in crises. Whether you adopt or not, you save a life by accompanying a dog traveling to the US and/or fostering.

It is a crime of callous self-centeredness when a person overlooks a rescue to buy a pet. Until people wake up the slaughter will continue. Until we stop executing healthy dogs, breeding and buying should stop.

Lynn Pacifico is a fourth generation Villager who loves dogs, nature and New York City.