If you go to a pet store and get a dog, chances are pretty good that it came from a puppy mill. It’s a sad state of affairs, and it really ups your chances of buying an unhealthy dog with – lacking a more sensitive word here – defects. Victoria Stillwell, a well-known dog trainer and activist, knew of a puppy mill in Cherokee County, Georgia, that had been around since the 1980s. Finally, they were able to shut it down in 2014. The video here doesn’t do justice to the deplorable conditions those dogs lived in.
What was really sad was that this wasn’t any ordinary puppy farm. They had so many different breeds of dogs. As the video detailed them taking the dogs away, I saw a wide range of them, including Chihuahuas, pit bulls, corgis, French Bulldogs, and Doberman, to name a few. These heartless people must have had a very extensive client list indeed. Fortunately, thanks to Stilwell’s tenacity
One of the more enduring images was of a bear of a police officer holding a tiny golden retriever puppy in the palm of his hand while they took the dogs away. The dogs were cared for in a clean environment. Soon, they were healthy enough to be part of an adoption drive. One that was so popular that people lined up for hours to have a chance to bring one home. The best sight at the end of that? Empty cages.
It didn’t end there. A year later, they held a reunion of all the people who had adopted the dogs. Seeing all those happy faces, both human and canine, brought a tear to my eye. Here were all these dogs who had faced a grim future at this puppy mill. Now they have loving forever homes. Stilwell did a great thing here. I hope she continues her great work for a very long time.
If I lived in Georgia, I would have been in line to get one of these dogs. No lie. How about you? Tell us in the comments which breed you would have wanted.