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116 Dogs Rescued From Two Missouri Puppy Mills

Updated on November 12, 2010

116 Dogs Rescued From Missouri Puppy Mills

Quick thinking and the collaborative effort of national and local animal welfare groups are responsible for the rescue of 116 dogs from two puppy mill in central Missouri on Tuesday, September 21, 2010.

Thankfully, one was a case where the owner realized she was in over her head and called Half-Way Home Pet Rescue and voluntarily surrendered the dogs, which included malteses, dashunds, shih tzus, lhasa apsos and larger breeds including boxers and huskys. The owner, who was not named, stated she could no longer afford the food needed to care for the dogs. Seventy-one dogs were surrendered from her business in Camden County located in central Missouri.

Half-Way Home Pet Rescue contacted the ASPCA, who then contacted PetSmart Charities. PetSmart supplied the rescue effort with the carriers needed to rescue the dogs.

The animals were taken to the Humane Society of Southwest Missouri in Springfield and HSMO in St. Louis, Missouri where they will remain until they are determined healthy and ready to begin a new life in a "furever" home.

The Humane Society of Missouri was working with the Greene County Sheriff's Department in the second puppy mill case. Forty-five dogs were rescued near Republic, Missouri for living in unsanitary conditions. The animals rescued here included schnauzers, boxers, miniature pinschers and Boston terriers. The home where the animals were seized belongs to Gary Dotson at 14026 West State Highway TT.

Captain Randy Wilson of the Greene County Sheriff's Department said charges could take several weeks if at all. Dotson was charged with animal cruelty in Newton County, Missouri earlier in the year for abandoning a breeding facility and leaving the dogs and puppies with no food or water. As a result of this neglect several of the animals died. The owner of this puppy mill had 12 pages of violations from April 2010 made by the USDA. The charges from this report included unsanitary conditions,feces in the floor and waste throughout the facility.

The dogs rescued in Greene County were taken to the HSMO (Humane Society of Missouri) where they will remain until a hearing on September 29. Taken from this raid were boxers,schnauzers, miniature pinschers and Boston terriers.

Missouri is the puppy mill capital of the United States and it is estimated that 40% of pet store dogs come from the state. There are more than 3000 puppy mills operating in the state.

Until recently, dogs seized from puppy mills were deemed unadoptable and were euthanized. Today it is the norm for dogs and cats to be placed into foster care until a permanent home can be found for them.

Citizens of Missouri will vote on the Puppy Mill Cruelty Prevention Act in November. This act, which will be listed on the ballot as Prop B, will restrict the number of breeding females to 50. It will almost improve the quality of life for the dogs by requiring breeders to provide adequate food, water, shelter and veterinary care to the dogs.

Elisa Black-Taylor is a regular contributor to


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      Tammy 7 years ago from USA

      It is a shame to see animals used for breeding purposes only. Each of these animals have a personality just like a child. It would a huge step if people were more conserned for the welfare of the animal than just making a buck. Terrific hub. Thanks for sharing.

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      MMcGrath 7 years ago

      This law will not do what you all seem to expect. Someone who is cruel or abusive to animals will be cruel or abusive to one dog or one hundred dogs. In almost every case of abusive breeding practices, the breeders were not licensed and were already breaking the law. Passing new laws will not stop people from continuing to break laws. MO does not provide enough money to enforce the existing laws, and in some cases, inspectors have not enforced the laws properly.

      The idea that you can legislate morality is ridiculous. If passing laws was all that was required to end immoral or unethical behavior, there would be no rape, murder, child sexual abuse, burglary or any other crime that is committed against people, property or animals.

      People who have a pet or two seem not to be able to comprehend how it can be possible to provide excellent care to large numbers of animals. I am wondering what Purina will do if faced with the necessity of reducing their large numbers of dogs to comply with this new law? I am sure jobs and tax dollars would be lost, yet I can't imagine that the dogs housed on Purina Farms get anything other than the best of care.

      Anyone who thinks that the number of animals in a facility is the sole determining factor in whether they are cared for properly has been duped by the animal rights extremists.

      What is important is not how many animals are in a breeding kennel, but in how well their needs are met. If you really want to make a difference and reduce the number of dogs victimized by animal abusers, insist on both higher humane standards of care, regardless of the number of dogs owned by one entity, and increased taxes to pay for increased numbers of inspectors as well as to pay for all aspects of increased enforcement.

      This law is not meant by its originators to secure humane care for animals, it is yet another step down the road to ending all human/animal interaction, which is the stated goal of animal rightists.

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      Jane 7 years ago

      how can they call this a business? is that supposed to make them feel better about what they do?

    • erthfrend profile image

      erthfrend 7 years ago from Florida

      The puppy mill situation is horrendous. How I wish it would END. Thank you for caring and writing this article.