The ethics of purchasing puppies


Graphic by Chase Otero.

Raquel Zuniga

Pets are some of the most innocent souls in the world. It breaks my heart to see so many lovable faces staring back at me when I visit the Animal Defense League of Texas-San Antonio (ADL-SA). San Antonio has eight animal shelters in its vicinity, but ADL is the only true “no kill” facility. It is able to house 400 dogs and cats of all breeds and ages.

Their services and resources range from: sheltering of animals, regardless of their conditions when they arrive; complete medical treatment provided to animals under the care of the shelter; full-time veterinarian and staff who treat all resident animals; low-cost spay/neuter program for pets of low-income families; humane education programs in schools and the broader community; and active adoption services to find homes for all the animals taken in. ADL is supported by adoption fees, donations, grants, bequests from individuals and special events to raise needed funds.

We all know someone who enjoys going to Petland and loving on all the cute puppies that they have on display. Petland encourages people to come visit and give the dogs attention so they are familiarized with people. The sad truth is when you buy a pet from places like Petland, your money goes back to the corporation’s pocket where they will use that money to buy more puppies.

ASPCA has important insight into puppy mills: “Because puppy mills focus on profit, dogs are often bred with little regard for genetic quality. Puppy mill puppies are prone to congenital and hereditary conditions including heart disease and blood and respiratory disorders.” These puppy mill retailers  know what conditions they are supporting but only care about their bottom line.

As an animal lover I ask of you to stop supporting these puppy mill retailers. All dogs and cats deserve love and a warm home. Please support local shelters and help get precious animals off our streets by adopting from ADL-SA or one of their sister shelters such as San Antonio Pets Alive.