Educating the General Public
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    Educating the General Public

    Just the other day I came across an article where a load of pure bred, underage puppies was intercepted from an overseas flight (JFK I think). Similar has happened in other airports with Miami being listed as a recent interception. Turns out these are puppies from Puppy Mills over seas. The mills are (from description) largely unregulated and the practice is illegal. These black market puppies are sold State side with large price tags.. with French Bulldogs being quoted as selling to (apparently wealthy) city dwellers for anywhere from $10,000 to $14,000 each. Some of the puppies were still nursing, and needed to be bottle fed because they were too young for solid food. Eventually, when deemed healthy, the puppies will be returned to their country of origin (no I do not know the process). Black market puppies... and the latest was a shipment of pregnant just about ready to whelp bitches (pure bred).

    Most of the people regularly posting here are seeking information and want to learn about dogs. I see articles on line and on social media that give advice on how to find a good breeder for a good dog. YET.. this market for dogs sold for exorbitant prices to unsuspecting people continues to exist and, from what I have seem reported, is actually growing. Where are those of use who care failing to get information out to the buyers so this stops? How can we do a better job? Does a black market such as this indicate that all the Animal rights agenda against breeding any dogs has put such a strain on supply that the demand can only be met in this manner?

    In another story there were dogs "rescued" from "meat dog" supplier in North Korea and one (or more) dogs came in with a strain of disease not endemic to the US putting domestic dogs at serious risk for extreme illness. The Meat Dog dealers have discovered that they can sell their dogs to "rescues" for more than they can for meat so you can see where this is going.

    And yet another story a Chihuahua came in that had rabies and bit a couple of people (this story is a bit older and most have heard it). Since then a second rabid dog has come in from another Foreign rescue situation.

    In these cases pictures of animals in horrid conditions in foreign countries have pulled people or groups of people in. These animals can bring in disease, can have falsified records (this was the case of the rabid dogs) and can seriously impact the resident dog population that has no immunity to these foreign (often endemic) diseases). Again, how can those of use who care reach the end user.. the one who adopts the animal? I am sure those exposed to the rabid dogs will not do this again.. the rabies post exposure shots are not pleasant and rabies is deadly once it is symptomatic.

    Another article I read said that we euthanize over a half million dogs a year in the US.. yet we import a million dogs... and it was implied these are rescue dogs. I did not find that source so those figures may not be accurate.

    Last, and certainly not least, if you read through the posts on this forum you see things like questions about my designer breed "Puggle" "Yorkie-poo" "You-Name-the-breed Doodle" etc. Certainly the information has been out there for a long time that tells the story behind designer dogs and the lack of good breeding stock and consistent type (both physical type and temperament). Yet that market continues to grow. How are we failing to get the information out to the buyers?

    I have read over and over that education is answer and I think it can be. In spite of everyone being connected through internet and social media it just seems that the message is not getting out... How are we failing?

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    Senior Member Canyx's Avatar
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    Re: Educating the General Public

    I don't know the answers, but I want to say that more involvement in legislation is important for some of these things. For example, in my area there have been people fighting to put decent laws in that would prevent puppy mill type operations. But politics is messy and people turn it into anti-circus, anti-rodeo, anti-hunting... And it never goes through.

    I honestly think there are more mediocre rescues our there than there are good ones. By mediocre I mean, people's hearts are in the right places and they care a lot about animals. But mission drift, and not seeing the big picture, can be side-effects of only thinking to "save all the animals." As an example, my private shelter would never transfer in Korean meat dogs but some around us do. Yet, they lack the behavioral resources to help families when their un-socialized, possibly traumatized animals have problems. Guess who's been working a lot of cases with Korean meat dogs (hint: me). One of my colleagues has a friend who went to Korea. The butcher had a puppy and pretty much emotionally blackmailed the tourists into buying the puppy - he would have killed the puppy right there in front of them. I would have walked away because the big picture matters more to me than the singular life in the present. But who can say those people did anything wrong by saving a life? I wouldn't. (the dog has behavior challenges like every imported meat dog I've ever seen, but he's loved and in a good home).

    But really, I have no idea. I too would like people to know the larger effects of their decisions. But I don't want them to feel bad about having the dog they have, you know? Like my doodle-owning clients are fantastic people and they love their dogs. Their dogs aren't bad dogs either.
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    Re: Educating the General Public

    we have done legislation against puppy mills , you close down the pet shops, they open up store front adoption agencies (FL) were they don't keep the dogs, but bring them by appointment for clients.. My Mom fell for that... she got an underage pup suppose to be an older age miniature yorkie, that ended up 23lbs ??? they also started rescue fronts,, using the marketing of rescue litters to sell their puppy mill pups..

    legislation hurts real breeders, it hurts dog owners.. (both follow the laws already in place).. Puppy mills will not follow the laws, and tey will continue to change their strategy at every turn. Will real breeders are squeezed out more and more, and the waiting list to get dogs from legit breeders gets long and longer That puppy mill pups are easier to obtain

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    I've said it before and will say it again here- most people just dont want to be educated- ignorance is bliss. Welcome to present day society. I'll go so far as to say that an awful lot of people that CLAIM to want education and to help only say it to be part of whatever the trend is at the time or to make themselves feel good for awhile. There is no depth there. I agree education is the answer. But people have to want to be educated- and then actually put forth the effort and self discipline to stand behined it. Thats asking alot of most people.

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    I hate being another cynical one but I agree with [email protected] It is far easier for lots of people to disregard good advice and indulge themselves, think instant gratification, being slaves to their emotions, needing a puppy now...the only countries with few dog problems have put in place very strict, well policed laws. We have seen a marked reduction in stray dogs in rescue in the UK since it has become compulsory to microchip every dog. New laws about breeding and selling are also being put into place. This has only happened through massive lobbying and petitions. Hopefully it will be policed properly, time will tell. We cannot get rid of greed and stupidity but we can make it very hard for people to act greedy and stupid.

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    Quote Originally Posted by PatriciafromCO View Post
    we have done legislation against puppy mills , you close down the pet shops, they open up store front adoption agencies (FL) were they don't keep the dogs, but bring them by appointment for clients.. My Mom fell for that... she got an underage pup suppose to be an older age miniature yorkie, that ended up 23lbs ??? they also started rescue fronts,, using the marketing of rescue litters to sell their puppy mill pups..

    legislation hurts real breeders, it hurts dog owners.. (both follow the laws already in place).. Puppy mills will not follow the laws, and tey will continue to change their strategy at every turn. Will real breeders are squeezed out more and more, and the waiting list to get dogs from legit breeders gets long and longer That puppy mill pups are easier to obtain
    Retail Rescue is more than a catch phrase for sure.. and then some of the "rescues" end up breeding mixed breed dogs to stay afloat.. and make more $$.. which is dishonest but better than importing dogs from over seas that may introduce deadly disease.

    Quote Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
    I've said it before and will say it again here- most people just dont want to be educated- ignorance is bliss. Welcome to present day society. I'll go so far as to say that an awful lot of people that CLAIM to want education and to help only say it to be part of whatever the trend is at the time or to make themselves feel good for awhile. There is no depth there. I agree education is the answer. But people have to want to be educated- and then actually put forth the effort and self discipline to stand behined it. Thats asking alot of most people.
    THIS. So true.

    Quote Originally Posted by planete View Post
    I hate being another cynical one but I agree with [email protected] It is far easier for lots of people to disregard good advice and indulge themselves, think instant gratification, being slaves to their emotions, needing a puppy now...the only countries with few dog problems have put in place very strict, well policed laws. We have seen a marked reduction in stray dogs in rescue in the UK since it has become compulsory to microchip every dog. New laws about breeding and selling are also being put into place. This has only happened through massive lobbying and petitions. Hopefully it will be policed properly, time will tell. We cannot get rid of greed and stupidity but we can make it very hard for people to act greedy and stupid.
    The issue is the unintended consequences. In the US most of the laws seem written by Animal Rights people who would end all animal ownership if they could. The good breeders abide by the law. Others not so much.. and dogs reproduce pretty well on their own.

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    Isn't it the same with any criminal activity? We cannot stamp out completely the harmful behaviour but we can ban it and hunt it down. Making the social climate hostile to this kind of exploitation is of course a matter of education but also of laws. If there is a law against it, it brands the activity as antisocial unequivocally. It does take time for public opinion to change but it can change.

    The following is far from perfect and many loopholes will probably be found but it is a step in the right direction by the UK government: https://www.agriapet.co.uk/hub-agria...gulation-2018/

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    Quote Originally Posted by planete View Post
    Isn't it the same with any criminal activity? We cannot stamp out completely the harmful behaviour but we can ban it and hunt it down. Making the social climate hostile to this kind of exploitation is of course a matter of education but also of laws. If there is a law against it, it brands the activity as antisocial unequivocally. It does take time for public opinion to change but it can change.

    The following is far from perfect and many loopholes will probably be found but it is a step in the right direction by the UK government: https://www.agriapet.co.uk/hub-agria...gulation-2018/
    No. It is NOT a step in the right direction. It simply is a way for Government to interfere.
    Education means learning about the Breed you want to obtain. Education means understanding that the parents need to have actually done something and if that something is Breed Specific (such as German Shorthaired Pointers actually titled in Field trials and Border Collies actually herding etc.). Education means knowing what breed specific health testing needs to be done on the parents (such as CERF for eyes on Collies and Hip and Elbow Certification on German Shepherds, Labrador Retrievers, golden Retrievers and so forth). Education means understanding that a "Doodle" is likely not parented by any dog that has any of the above tests and was created to sell dogs.

    Having the Government make laws and charge money and inspect and the rest only ensures fees paid to the Government and (essentially) clean and tidy kennels and dogs well fed and have seen a vet/are vaccinated. All it is is another inroad for the Animal Rights agenda to further regulate what you can do with your property (dogs you own).

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    Actually, ensuring all breeding stock is housed in adequately sized and kept kennels and properly fed and vaccinated would be a huge improvement in the life of the puppy mill dogs which exist here. I know the ideal is for breeding to be done only by serious breeders with the good of the breed at heart. Who is going to make sure this education reaches the man/woman in the street (and it is acted upon), why hasn't it been done so far? What would you do to make sure nobody buys a badly bred dog ever again?

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    Quote Originally Posted by planete View Post
    Actually, ensuring all breeding stock is housed in adequately sized and kept kennels and properly fed and vaccinated would be a huge improvement in the life of the puppy mill dogs which exist here. I know the ideal is for breeding to be done only by serious breeders with the good of the breed at heart. Who is going to make sure this education reaches the man/woman in the street (and it is acted upon), why hasn't it been done so far? What would you do to make sure nobody buys a badly bred dog ever again?
    The emphasized part is my original question. The information is not secret.. and is also not sought.. though it is readily available!

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    Quote Originally Posted by 3GSD4IPO View Post
    The emphasized part is my original question. The information is not secret.. and is also not sought.. though it is readily available!
    Ok. You do not like legislation. The information is available but it does not change the behaviour of enough people. I am returning your question as I feel you have led me into a dead end. Without legislation, in order to get a large number of people to do something they would not normally chose to do you have to make the course of action irresistibly attractive or brainwash them. It usually requires a lot of money and manpower to brainwash people. Who is going to supply these? Only governments and large corporations have the means to do this. As to make it irresistibly attractive to the majority of prospective dog owners to source all the dogs being bought from only ethical breeders, that puts the ball back into the breeders' court, does it not?

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    Quote Originally Posted by planete View Post
    Ok. You do not like legislation. The information is available but it does not change the behaviour of enough people. I am returning your question as I feel you have led me into a dead end. Without legislation, in order to get a large number of people to do something they would not normally chose to do you have to make the course of action irresistibly attractive or brainwash them. It usually requires a lot of money and manpower to brainwash people. Who is going to supply these? Only governments and large corporations have the means to do this. As to make it irresistibly attractive to the majority of prospective dog owners to source all the dogs being bought from only ethical breeders, that puts the ball back into the breeders' court, does it not?
    You seem to think that regulating the breeders will create ethics (in the original post it has created fewer breeders and a black market for badly bred pure bred dogs). Laws only create more burden on ethical breeders resulting in fewer ethical breeders in the long run (but often an escalation/increase in the number of back yard breeders and puppy mills and/or black Market puppies).

    The BEST regulation for any product being sold is an educated buyer. Educated buyers are less likely to buy substandard products. This is the reason (in the US) that Foreign Car maker Toyota is surpassed Domestic autos in overall sales. This should work for dogs as well.

    My question is, why doesn't it and what can be done to better educate the buyers?

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    If you really believe education alone will make people change their behaviour en masse because some other people they do not care about tell them they should, I am sorry, I wish I could agree with you but I can't. The information exists, people who are interested read it and take heed, the others do not. There is massive evidence published everyday about the harmful effects of drugs/alcohol abuse/ violence and many other things and people still do it. The roots go deeper than the ethics of pet ownership, many people have not learnt how to think, judge and make reasoned decisions based on evidence and it affects the way they lead their lives. A sound, evidence based education for all up to a level enabling critical thinking would be a good start. This is going to stray into politics if I go on so I will stop now and step away from this thread, but thank you for raising the question and prodding me into thinking about it even if I do not like my own conclusions.

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    Quote Originally Posted by planete View Post
    If you really believe education alone will make people change their behaviour en masse because some other people they do not care about tell them they should, I am sorry, I wish I could agree with you but I can't. The information exists, people who are interested read it and take heed, the others do not. There is massive evidence published everyday about the harmful effects of drugs/alcohol abuse/ violence and many other things and people still do it. The roots go deeper than the ethics of pet ownership, many people have not learnt how to think, judge and make reasoned decisions based on evidence and it affects the way they lead their lives. A sound, evidence based education for all up to a level enabling critical thinking would be a good start. This is going to stray into politics if I go on so I will stop now and step away from this thread, but thank you for raising the question and prodding me into thinking about it even if I do not like my own conclusions.
    '..There is massive evidence published everyday about the harmful effects of drugs/alcohol abuse/ violence and many other things and people still do it."

    All those things are regulated by law and yet they still exist. People are educated extensively about both the health and legal consequences and they still engage in those activities.
    I guess dog breeding and puppy buying doesn't have a chance.

    Frustrating to say the least.

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    Re: Educating the General Public

    I stumbled on this thread by accident, actually looking for some kind of solution to the mess of dogs the general population has. Searching internet you find only about 5% of all dogs in the USA. receive even just basic training. That’s an awful lot of untrained dogs in the country. That’s not counting strays and feral dogs.

    We (my dog and I) have lived in this “luxury apartment home” now getto ( my term) for 8 years. During this time I have never ever seen anyone offer their dog a treat. I never see, hear, them talk to their dog or offer a command. Our building has 300 units maybe 75-80 filled. It’s dog friendly $50/mo $300 pet fee. I’m the only one with a real ESA rating. Not a purchased scam fancy certification thing. Not going there today. Anyway the point is I have never see anyone do any kind of training. There is a fancy private dog park behind our building that is occasionally used. We never use it.

    Education. There is one of the top dog training centers just 2 miles from us. We have trained there. Another top training center just 8 miles, an easy common drive. We have trained there too. Another the largest and heavily advertised center about the same distance. We trained there until I got got into a heated debate with two of their young copy cat “trainers.” This center has a “program training” system with the mistaken assumption that ALL dogs respond to their training. Enough said. There are at least a dozen other centers around the town that offer good basic training. So dog training is readily available and not exhorbatant pricing. Yet I have never heard of anyone going to them. We get out 4 times a day so get to see most of the dogs everyday. Usually about 75 dogs live here at any given time.

    Chatting with a few the usual comment is “my dog is just a dog, he doesn’t need training” yet every single dog here is reactive. They growl, bark, yank on the leash most have these stupid flex leashes. Most people are much younger than I. Maybe 30’s. These apts are expensive but they often have a pair of newer cars or trucks. The parking lot is full every night as is the garage.

    There is a strict rule on cleaning up after your dog. There are 4 rolls of poop bags right by a convent trash can. Yet a big pile of dog poop is right next to the trash can! That doesn’t count other piles on the walkway. I took a picture and posted on our dumb social media and mgmt took it down as “distasteful”. Our dogs are supposed to have DNA samples on record so the mgmt can fine us for poop piles. ROTFLMAO. I’ve never heard of a fine being levied. Lately I’d guess many dogs are not even on the resident leases so are not being paid for. I think many dogs come from the Petco about 3/4 mile from us. I’ve seen a puppy mill truck delivering there a couple times.

    At one point I offered to have a dog discussion group on the dumb social media. I got not a single reply.

    The result of this mess as far as my own well being is two falls down the steps due to uncontrolled dogs rushing the steps, at least three knock downs on the slippery side walks due to dogs jumping on me. Three dog attacks due to off leash dogs. These could have been very serious had I not been down this road before and had defensive dog training. Fighting a big Rotti at 75 years old is not recommended but I will not let injury to my dog happen. All three of these got the bruising of their lives and probably the only training experience ever. Pure negative whatever.... punishment, call it what you like. Just writing about it gets my measly Adrenalin flowing. Sadly.

    Anyway as you can see this is common stuff everywhere. It was not like this 30-40 years ago. I never had any problems with my SCH dogs out in public. We had five dogs at one time and I trained all of them. We went to classes for controlled socialization and to practice our training.

    In two months we are moving to the boat. So far the marina people seem to be a little better. Some have training. I’ve already exposed two big off leash dogs to stun device. I doubt they will ever come near us again. The marina mgr said no problem, dogs are required to be on leash. He provides poop bags and trash cans too. He said as long as my dog is leashed, we rule.

    Well I’ve ranted enough. Sorry , I don’t have any answers. I did chat with the mgr of our apt and told her that maybe she should require dog owners to attend classes. Work out a fee deal possibly with the nearby training center. The look I got was...say what?
    Last edited by Bentwings; 04-28-2019 at 11:17 AM.
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    Re: Educating the General Public

    Quote Originally Posted by Bentwings View Post
    Anyway as you can see this is common stuff everywhere. It was not like this 30-40 years ago. I never had any problems with my SCH dogs out in public. We had five dogs at one time and I trained all of them. We went to classes for controlled socialization and to practice our training.
    I agree with absolutely everything you said. I waited for Laurel until I was done with any sort of human kids/mating&dating so I could afford at least basic obedience and am going through huge culture shock and saying all the wrong things.

    I knew about puppy mills, but I didn't know how bad the resellers and puppy scams are until a friend told me her horror story, I said something mildly condescending about how great it was that she was taking such good care of her fake Papillon that her DNA test said was a Yorkie cross, and realized that I was talking to myself.

    The worst part about the scam is that they deliberately give the new owners bad care and feeding advice (Yorkie puppies have tiny stomachs, high metabolisms, and can die of hypoglycemia very quickly) so that the puppies die before the scammers get caught.

    I can't afford a DNA test for Laurel and I can't stop being angry until I vent somewhere; this feels like a safe and appropriate thread to make an idiot of myself on if my friend was exaggerating or pulling my leg, lol.

    The general public is not educated.

    Quote Originally Posted by 3GSD4IPO View Post

    Last, and certainly not least, if you read through the posts on this forum you see things like questions about my designer breed "Puggle" "Yorkie-poo" "You-Name-the-breed Doodle" etc. Certainly the information has been out there for a long time that tells the story behind designer dogs and the lack of good breeding stock and consistent type (both physical type and temperament). Yet that market continues to grow. **How are we failing to get the information out to the buyers?**
    You, 3GSD4IPO are not in any way, shape, or form failing personally. Nor do I feel that "dog people" in general have failed me as a new puppy pet parent adoptive buyer thingy-thing. I.DID.NOT.KNOW. If I did, in fact, purchase a designer dog from a puppy mill reseller. The market continues to grow because of something called "Capitalism" or something called "Human Nature" or something called "Evil", depending on your worldview, in my own humble opinion, but if you think I am mistaken, how can we fix this?

    Quote Originally Posted by 3GSD4IPO View Post
    I have read over and over that education is answer and I think it can be. In spite of everyone being connected through internet and social media it just **seems** that the message is not getting out... How are we failing?
    My most relevant comment is the bolding of your own words. Things are not always as they seem.

    Thank you so much for this thread and also your comments on Canyx's thread about why it isn't a good idea to call an All American an "X mix" based on its physical appearance.
    Last edited by laurelsmom; 04-30-2019 at 03:19 AM. Reason: Typo....accidentally made separate post when I meant to edit; sorry 'bout that folks.
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