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The cruel practice of puppy farming is alive and well in Australia, leading to hundreds of pet owners being duped into paying sometimes thousands of dollars for an unhealthy, tortured farmed pup.

Most of Australia’s puppy farmed pups are the ones you’ll see in your local pet shop window, though puppy farmed pups can be sold privately, on the web and overseas too.

Likened to battery hens, the breeding dogs are kept in cages or pens for their entire life with the sole purpose of producing puppies. Australian farms or ‘puppy mills’ typically house anywhere between 20 to 1000 breeding females, who are kept constantly pregnant or lactating in order to keep up with demand.

Puppy mills are legal in Australia, so long as the proprietors of the farms meet the minimum standard of care. Laws surrounding these farms vary from state to territory, but usually require that the dog can stand up, turn around and lie down in a pen that has a partial roof.

Think of your pet dog. How would you feel if he or she was locked up in a large dog breeding facility and existed purely to mass produce puppies for some big old mean man’s profit? They can’t even bond with their babes, who are taken straight from the cages to be sold in the confines of a pet shop window. Grrr!

If you think how some individual shops can take more than 20 puppies a week and multiply that by the number of pet shops found in shopping centres throughout Australia, that’s a truckload of mass produced puppies. And according to Petrescue.com, even if the ‘doggies in the window’ look cute, clean and healthy there’s no guarantee that their mothers aren’t suffering as breeding dogs in cages for their entire lives.

In Byron Bay tomorrow, Puppy Farm & Pet Awareness Day is being held at Council’s carpark in Station Street, Mullumbimby (next to the administration centre) from 9am to 3pm.

The RSPCA Education Mobile Unit will be there as well as dog whisperer Martin McKenna, with information stalls and free activities for children including a jumping castle and face painting. It’s all about spreading awareness of the issues facing dogs.

Byron Shire Council’s officer Angie Thomas said the day will also be a great opportunity for people to microchip and register their pets with Council. “It can save a lot of heartache if a pet goes missing as the pet can be easily identified and returned to the owner."

petawaremess by you.

We love our dogs! Meet Eve and Poco

Tomorrow (September 19) is Puppy Farm Awareness Day. If you weren’t aware of puppy mills before and would like to find out more or even take action against their existence, hit this website.

Posted: Friday September 18, 2009

Published: Sep 18, 2009 8:00am by philippa.

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