This I Believe

Kelly - Exeter, Rhode Island
Entered on December 12, 2007
Age Group: 30 - 50

Sadly, still to this day, so many people treat dogs like a piece of property, like a car perhaps. They sometimes make the dogs fight and the dogs end up dying one way or another when they are very young. Dogs, or any animal for that matter, deserve to be treated with the dignity and respect they would want to be treated with. People should know better than to take their frustration out on animals. They don’t understand right from wrong, so when you yell at them, they don’t know what they did wrong, so the animal will most likely end up doing it again.

An extreme amount of puppies are unfortunate enough to be born in a puppy mill. A puppy mill is a facility where dogs are treated horribly. Worse than you can imagine. The mothers are bred over and over and over some times are forced to have up to 10 litters, which is extremely unhealthy. Female dogs are only supposed to be bred twice throughout their entire lifetime. The mother can get extremely sick and die. Mothers can be bred with their own sons when they get old enough. This can cause birth defects and early diagnoses of cancer. When the puppies are born, there are about 4 dogs to a relatively small crate. Normally, crates have a plastic removable floor, which is made for easy clean up. But, puppy mills don’t use those floors. The crates without the floors are stacked on top of each other. Since there are no floors, there is nothing to catch the puppy waste except for the poor defenseless puppy underneath of it. That can cause serious illnesses for the puppy. The puppies that don’t make it are just thrown in a “puppy dump”. It’s just like a regular dump, except instead of garbage, there are dogs.

I have a dog that was born in a puppy mill in Nebraska. He is 4 years old and will be 5 soon. We got him from Laughlin Kennels in Massachusetts, where no puppy should be raised. Laughlin Kennels is a small step above a puppy mill. Puppies from these types of kennels can cost anywhere from 500 dollars to 1500 dollars. Because of poor breeding, and poor care, the animals are more likely to get very, very sick. My dog could possibly have Lymphoma, a type of cancer, and we think the reason is because he was raised in a puppy mill. Puppy mills should be stopped and all dogs should be treated to the best of the care taker’s ability.

From the publicity that Michael Vick got by having illegal dog fights on his property, volunteers from local animal shelters every where in the country should go to peoples’ homes and teach them how to properly take care of their animals. Whoever hosts or takes part in dog fights, should be put in the cage to experience what it is like for the dogs.