Now Where Do We Stand? Their Answer-We Don't Know....
Within the last 10 days, a select group of people participated in a conference call with two key personnel within the APHIS division of the USDA, Dr. Gerald Rushin and Dr. Kay Carter-Corker, to discuss the changes to the definition of "Retail Pet Store" and how it will effect the smaller breeders. Dr. Rushin, DVM is a Staff Veterinary Medical Officer and Dr. Corker, DVM is with APHIS Investigative and Enforcement Services. This conference was recorded and they were told up front that it would be.
The conference call was to be 55 minutes long, with Dr. Corker using about one fourth of this allowed time to read a "statement of intent," prepared by an unnamed administrator. It was then to be opened up to answer previously submitted questions, with a proposed allotment of 10 minutes at the end of the call for open questions. The questions were comprised of a collection gathered from various breeders. Well, you can imagine the success of the original intent! I mean, you know how government officials typically answer direct questions-too much indirect verbiage and rarely with a straight yes or no. Needless to say, not all questions had the time to be asked, nor did all of the questions asked get complete and satisfactory answers. However, we will attempt to give you the jest of the questions asked and the answers to the best of our ability.
In Regards to Pet Breeders and Owners
Our goal is to educate the public in current pet and animal legislation, and how they can get involved to protect their rights. Certain organizations are lobbying away your rights to own a pet, or animal(s) of any kind. Only you have the power to stop your rights from being taken away from you.
We, as responsible breeders and owners ourselves, understand the need to expose and correct substandard conditions in the Pet Industry. We too empathize with the images across the TV screen of a neglected or abused animal, and want to help improve the breeding industry so that there are no more substandard breeders (puppy mills - not our words, but the words of HSUS), and we want to do this by encouraging efforts to improve conditions with substandard breeding practices in a realistic approach.
The word “puppy mill” is a slang term used by animal rights activists against anyone who breeds dogs, no matter how clean the facility or healthy the dogs. It is a derogatory and highly offensive term.
We want to help the public become aware of the donations they give for this, and how they are used. There are many large organizations asking for your hard earned dollars. Many people are not aware that they are able to donate directly to their local pet shelter, or local Humane Society, which truly need those dollars.
PB&O's Most Wanted
The ASPCA recently "acquired" photos and contact information for thousands of breeders and has published these on their "NoPetStorePuppies" website, citing that they obtained these through the Freedom of Information Act. In an interview with Bloomberg Businessweek, the following statements were made by Cori Menkin, Senior Director of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) Puppy Mills campaign:
"A lot of pet stores will say, 'We don't get pets from puppy mills, but from USDA-licensed breeders."