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January 16, 2009

Talk Back: Puppy Protests

Lots of feedback about last Saturday’s nationwide rallies at 22 Petland stores.

281x144_petland_fairfax_va Most people are terribly disappointed that Petland continues to try to hide behind false claims. Our eight-month investigation exposed the chain as the nation’s largest retail supporter of puppy mills. HSUS investigators visited 21 Petland stores, traced the origins of about 17,000 puppies shipped to the stores, and visited many of Petland’s breeders and suppliers, discovering appalling conditions.

It’s time for Petland to do the right thing—to stop selling puppies from mills and support shelter adoptions instead. And so many have made that clear: tens of thousands of advocates have written letters, advocates are organizing more protests at Petland stores, former customers and employees have spoken out, and even your pets have joined in.

I want to thank all of you who have taken action in this campaign and for your continued support of our work against puppy mills. Here are some of your recent comments.

It was very emotional for me last Saturday to see 30 people brave the elements at the Wheaton, Ill. Petland rally. High school students who had made their own signs, a family of four who held signs and people who all believe in the elimination of puppy mills gathered together! The thumbs up and the horns honking in agreement were many. My husband and I are always amazed when we talk to people who don't know about Petland and/or puppy mills. We still need to do more work on educating the public about pet stores that sell puppies and puppy mills. —Susan Taney

The pictures of all the people standing up and protesting on behalf of puppy mill dogs all around our country makes me very happy! We've been protesting here in N.H. since April this year. We’re out there every other weekend. We need all the people we can get to continue protesting against these pet stores that sell puppies. GREAT JOB EVERYBODY!!! KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK! If the puppy mill dogs could talk, they'd be thanking you too.... —Sherry Bezanson

Thank you for continuing to fight the fight against puppy mills! I am a volunteer member of a pug rescue organization and know firsthand how horrifying this situation is. Many breeders are closing up shop due to the trying economy and we are doing our best to help as many dogs as we can. It is truly an epidemic. We can't do it alone… we have to rally together! Thanks again. —Lori Swett

Bravo!!! Keep up the good work and let’s shut these despicable mills down for good… —MA Moore

What a great opportunity for Petland! Obama will be adopting his new family dog from a shelter soon. Once he does this, many people will be doing the same. The timing is perfect for Petland to switch their business plan and help with shelter adoptions. People do not understand that the parents of the cute little puppy in the window are living in horrid conditions until they are killed. Stop supporting puppy mills, Petland. —Janie Jenkins, Wilmette, Ill.

What a great show of support at the Cicero (Syracuse, N.Y. area) rally on Jan 10! Despite the 10-degree temps, we managed to have about 15 faithful participants. —Darby

Early this past December I attended a puppy mill protest at the Petland store in St. Paul, Minnesota. That day, we had a winter storm with flying snow and frigid temperatures. Eighteen hearty souls turned out. With signs held high, we spoke for those with no voices. We will not stop, we will not fail. The dogs need everyone of us, and come Jan. 10 we are gonna show the Petlands of the world that their time is running out. —Jonathan Gilbert

I have always been an animal lover and I have to say that I was shocked and embarrassed that I wasn't aware of puppy mill conditions until the HSUS report came out. It is beyond sickening and I intend to do anything I can to help with the cause. I recently joined with my local group and I attended the Plano Petland rally last Saturday. It was AWESOME!! We had about 122 people come out and it was around 30 degrees all day. In case you don't know, that is COLD for us Texans! LOL We had two of the Dallas news stations come out and interview our organizer, John Pippin. We were very peaceful and really did our best to just get our message to the people passing by. I think most people have heard the term "puppy mill" but most haven't actually seen the videos and photos of what the dogs live like inside. In my experience, once someone sees those images, they can no longer ignore the situation.

We need to put a stop to the puppy mills and also continue to put pressure on the companies like Petland that buy from them. While I was at the rally, we got a lot of supportive honking and thumbs up. It was such a great feeling to be part of the rally and I hope we can continue to grow in numbers with each rally. They will realize that we are NOT going away.

We have millions of dogs in shelters that are being killed every year due to the overpopulation, yet puppy mills continue to breed as fast as they can. There should be a federal law setting a limit on the number of dogs each mill can breed per year. We can picket the stores every weekend but something has to be done at the puppy mills as well in my opinion. I know this involves the government which gets tough. We need Oprah and other celebrities’ help to continue this fight and get something done!!! —Angela

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