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What is a Puppy Mill?
by Beverly B. Passe
About the author: Beverly Passe is a breeder and exhibitor of Maltese dogs for more than 35 years. The "House of Myi" is located in Gig Harbor, Washington. Her hard work and dedication to the Maltese breed has produced many Best in Show winners as well receiving numerous awards throughout the years.

"Puppy Mill" is not a term I like to use because of the lack of definition. Personally, I feel saddened seeing any animal living in cages--but that is me. Personally, I feel saddened seeing any living thing devalued by looking at it only in monetary terms--but that is me. I'm sure that out there somewhere there is a "clean" puppy mill just as there are clean butcher shops and clean concentration camps. "Clean" is not the issue.

My father who has passed on spent many hours teaching me that all living things are valuable that even the most lowly slug leaves a silvery trail to brighten our day and that we should respect and love the world around us. He taught me that the world is comprised of "givers" and "takers" and combinations thereof.

A "puppy miller" to me is a "taker" and a true loser as they see the world around them only in monetary terms. Whether they operate a 500 dog operation with their dogs crowded in rabbit hutches or whether they operate out of their family home with the dogs living in dark garages, basements, and bedrooms in tiny cages--it makes little difference excepting in the magnitude of suffering they can inflict upon their little prisoners.

They don't aspire to create beauty and better the world around them. Instead they are driven by greed. I suspect as children they did not learn "empathy" and cannot feel or understand the suffering they cause. They are the losers as their lives are stressful and lack joy. They produce, but they cannot CREATE.

Behind their smiles are empty half-dead shells capable of little more than adding and subtracting. Normally, they have good sales skills and will try to convince you that they are "good" folks who love their dogs. Normally, they will turn over from breed to breed depending upon the supply and demand of the market. When you hand over your money and leave with your dog do not expect more as these empty souls can't give you what they do not have. When you buy a dog from a true breeder who loves his breed a tiny piece of that breeder goes with you. The dog you bring home is his creation born out of his need to share, his need to bring beauty and love into the lives of others. He will be there for you when you have questions and needs. Treat this person gently as he is a tender soul.

The puppy miller sees a champion on a pedigree in terms of $$$$$. The dedicated breeder will hold a vision of that champion in his head and feel a brief feeling of joy upon seeing that dog's name that a puppy miller can never understand.

The puppy miller is a loser, a taker, spoiler, an artless bastard to be pitied at best. They do not aspire, but merely toil to produce. Like the clever psychopath they are without empathy for others and the living world around them. Despise them if you wish, fear them, but don't forget to pity them.

 

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