A new store called “The Barking Boutique,” which indicates that it will specialize in puppy sales, has opened in The Woodland Mall, near Grand Rapids (July 5, 2016) Their website states, “The Barking Boutique performs background checks on all breeders, ensuring they are A level.” However, this business has not made it clear that it will be providing a list of those breeders to consumers at the store, or if they will provide copies of the USDA inspection reports, which are required under the federal Animal Welfare Act, of the breeders who supply them. In addition, Michigan only has three USDA-licensed dog breeders, none of which are located in West Michigan—which means that any breeder that supplies the store will be transporting the puppies from a long distance.
Puppy stores are becoming a thing of the past as the public becomes more aware of puppy mills and backyard breeders. Reputable breeders never sell their puppies to a retail outlet, because it is often against the code of ethics for their breeding club. Reputable breeders have waiting lists of people willing to purchase their animals, and never a surplus of animals. More than 100 cities across the country are banning the sale of puppies in pet stores just like this, because of the inhumane conditions found in many breeding facilities that supply those stores. Retail puppy stores prevent families from seeing the parents of the puppies they want to purchase, or the conditions in which the puppies were raised. Families need to know they will not be contributing to the cruelty of inhumane “puppy mills,” in which large numbers of dogs are bred as a cash crop, with little concern for their well-being.
Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan is a watchdog group working to inform the public about the puppy mill/pet store pipeline, and protecting families from purchasing sick animals. Please sign this petition in support of our campaign to promote humane business models in pet supply stores, and to ask the owners of “The Barking Boutique” to take a pledge not to sell puppies and instead feature only adoptable pets from Michigan rescues and shelters.
Puppy Friendly Pet Store Pledge : The Humane Society of the United Stateshttp://www.humanesociety.org/forms/puppy_friendly_pet_store_pledge.html