As I sat having ramen for lunch downtown today, a young fellow with the friendliest Labradoodle imaginable came in. The fellow was just thrilled with his lovely dog, and I could understand why. This designer mutt is one of the most popular types of puppies selling today. We began talking and I asked him where he got it. "From a breeder," he told me. "Did you meet her at her home?" I asked.
"No, we actually met her in Las Vegas." His family had travelled from L.A. to Vegas to meet and pick up the dog. The so called "breeder" came from another state to bring the dog to them. I informed him of the sad news that some suffering puppy mill dog had more than likely given birth to this gorgeous, clean and super friendly mixed breed.
For those who don't yet know, a puppy mill dog is one who's kept in abominable conditions as a birthing machine. I won't dignify the process by calling it breeding. The large numbers of dogs at the puppy mill live 24/7 in filthy cages with inadequate care or medical care. Many die. They never get to feel the grass under their feet or the kindness of a human who loves them. Legitimate breeders want to meet the perspective guardians and are proud to show you the parents of the dog you're considering. They are lovers of the breed who want to make sure their animals are going to a good home. THEY DO NOT SELL ON THE INTERNET!!! Puppy mill breeders advertise in newspapers, on the internet, sometimes disguised as adoption places that just happen to charge large fees to "adopt." They are almost always from out of state because they don't want you to see where the dogs are coming from.
There are so many dogs of every kind for adoption that chances are you can find the breed you're hung up on from "Petfinder." You put in your location and the breed, sex and age you want. If you don't see a dog you want immediately, just keep looking. One will come up. If you insist on getting a puppy, something I would never do, then call or write the American Kennel Club for a list of legitimate breeders for whatever the breed you want. There are so, so many wonderful dogs for adoption whose owners either got sick, died or couldn't handle a dog at all. Some who got them during the lock downs of Covid now find them inconvenient and want to be rid of them. A dog is a commitment, just as a child is, but not every person is up to either job. Please consider adopting. I've had nothing but mixed breed shelter dogs and they've each been so special. Get a great friend and save a life. You'll feel great that you do.