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Advice about shipping animals

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Guest Anonymous
Hi, everybody!

I came here because I need some advice about shipping animals of all kinds (not just dogs).

I started an online auction service here:
[url=http://realitycoffeeandhumblepie.com/index.shtml]Reality Cafe[/url] and have decided to allow live animals. I've written a short "help" page with what I think are the most important points -it's here: [url]http://realitycoffeeandhumblepie.com/pets.html[/url], but would like to know if there's anything I missed, or should include.

I would appreciate links to good sources of info about shipping, any advice about keeping animals from getting hurt or sick in transit, advice about where to purchase kennels or shipping crates...anything that might be useful.

Thanks in advance,
Reality

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Guest Anonymous
I've got a better idea - try being ethical and NOT auctioning live animals.
Most summer months you cannot ship at all and even in other times of the year its iffy shipping them.

[quote name='Reality']Hi, everybody!

I came here because I need some advice about shipping animals of all kinds (not just dogs).

I started an online auction service here:
[url=http://realitycoffeeandhumblepie.com/index.shtml]Reality Cafe[/url] and have decided to allow live animals. I've written a short "help" page with what I think are the most important points -it's here: [url]http://realitycoffeeandhumblepie.com/pets.html[/url], but would like to know if there's anything I missed, or should include.

I would appreciate links to good sources of info about shipping, any advice about keeping animals from getting hurt or sick in transit, advice about where to purchase kennels or shipping crates...anything that might be useful.

Thanks in advance,
Reality[/quote]

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Guest Anonymous
Sorry, [b]Guest[/b] but I do not believe there is anything unethical about auctioning animals. I've heard every one of the old, tired arguments and NONE of them are valid.

If you'd like to go to war over it, we certainly can -by email, or private messages.

Thanks, though to everyone -I got all the info I needed.

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Guest Anonymous
[quote name='Reality']Sorry, [b]Guest[/b] but I do not believe there is anything unethical about auctioning animals. I've heard every one of the old, tired arguments and NONE of them are valid.

If you'd like to go to war over it, we certainly can -by email, or private messages.

Thanks, though to everyone -I got all the info I needed.[/quote]

I'm sure you did get the info you needed and yes auctioning animals is completely unethical but then people with no ethics don't care so its obvious which one you are....

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Guest Anonymous
Are you serious Reality?!?! You see nothing unethical about auctioning animals?!?! Boy have you opened a can of worms. First of all this does nothing but promote puppy mills. Do you know how many purebreds are rescued from auctions every year? What do you know about these "breeders" where you are getting these dogs from? I'm sure there are no health guarantees at an auction. No responsible and/or reputable breeder would EVER sell their dogs through an auction. I'm sure that nearly all of the buyers at these auctions are nothing but people who run puppy mills. Second of all, I would be willing to bet my paycheck that a majority of dogs bought at an auction end up in shelters or rescues because the person who bought the dog did not realized what they were buying. Of course you don't think it's unethical...you making money from this. I hope it flops!!!! :evil:

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Guest Anonymous
Sorry...that was me...Newfiemom...this thing will not let me login!!!

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Guest Anonymous
First, do YOU know how many animals are 'rescued' from auctions every year?

Now, compare that number to the number of animals -purebred or otherwise 'rescued' that have not been auctioned.

People buy items from auctions for many, many different reasons -location, convenience, easy terms, good bargains, availability....the list goes on and on.

They buy from newspaper classifieds, stores, and every other imaginable venue for the SAME REASONS.

The animal breeder or seller at the far end of an auction is no more likely to be abusive or unethical than the one selling to a pet store, through a classified, through a web page, out of a box at the grocery store, or through any other venue.

Neither is the buyer -the buyer picking out an adorable shepherd puppy or exotic reptile from an auction is not doing anything different than the buyer who answers an ad and drives out to a barn, the buyer who orders through a web page, or the buyer who simply asks around town.

Certainly there are unethical breeders -and unethical buyers. But those who are unethical are unethical regardless of the venue. Those breeders who run puppy mills are undeterred by the removing of any venue -if they can't sell at an auction, they will sell through classifieds, word-of-mouth, or off the back of a truck. If they fail to sell them, they'll dump 'em and breed more. Twenty years ago online auctions didn't exist -but puppy mills darn sure did. They did a brisk business selling through ads in magazines, from signs on the side of the highway, through word-of-mouth, and even postcards on bulletin boards.

Same with buyers -if they can't buy from a particular venue, they'll buy from another. If they're really as abusive as everyone thinks, what makes anyone think they BUY at all? A person who just wants a dog to kick will get one from SOMEWHERE...even if s/he has to steal yours. Nothing stops an unethical person from simply adopting from a rescue shelter or collecting strays and breeding their own.

To single out those buyers/sellers who use online auctions and proclaim them all unethical, abusive or inhumane is rediculous. They are as a group no more immoral, unethical or abusive to their pets than any other group. In my opinion, the whole lot of them should get together and take any "animal rights" group who makes these kinds of rediculous statements in public to court for defamation of character and libel.

On the subject of health guarantees -yes, they are available. It's up to the buyer to ask questions of the breeder/seller, about the animal's health and other details. Before shipping, the seller has to have a vet's approval (no more than ten days in advance) before the animal can board the airplane. There are thousands of animals shipped every year in this country, and the fatality rate is extremely low -so low that the Post Office has openly admitted that PETA and the Humane Society have publicly lied about the situation (it's on their website). In most cases, a dog shipped from New York to LA lands on the same day -same as people.

The seller can ask questions too -"Sir, I noticed you've bid on my beautiful Lab puppy. May I ask if you have a fenced yard? Can you afford to take care of him? I've a policy not to sell to those that don't meet my criteria." By writing detailed descriptions, stating what he expects of the buyer, and using a minimum of good common sense, sellers can insure that auction buyers are satisfactory with as much accuracy as by any other method. It is no different than conversing with a seller who answered a newspaper ad.

The feedback system works very well -if an animal arrives in bad health, dirty, or with other problems, the buyer can leave feedback that describes the situation. Ditto if a seller has to refuse to ship because the buyer has made statements that cause him to cancel the sale.

All of these things mean that an auction -online or otherwise- is no more unethical than any other venue for the pet trade.

In fact, while I'm on the subject, I saw some 'do-gooders' on another forum (who claim to care for animals) advocating the theft of a pet they decided was being abused just because the owners apparently didn't share their views of proper caretaking (by keeping the animal in the garage). 'Scuze me, but last time I checked theft was still not only illegal, but just plain WRONG. So who has the ethics problem?

Those who've decided that animal use = animal abuse have already made up their minds, and I'm certainly not going to change them. But don't accuse me of being unethical, inhumane, immoral or anything else just because I'll allow people to buy or sell their pets through my site.

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Oh, Lordy... I really hate to do this...


Basically, all you are saying is that if people are going to get animals from [b]somewhere[/b], they might as well get them by way of you. You are saying it's not unethical because there are other venues that are are similar in nature to yours (classified ads, etc.). Also, you state effectively that it's not YOUR (collectively, in reference to anyone selling animals) responsibility to worry about what happens to the animals sold... it's a "buyer beware" market. While I agree that a person buying a pet through these venues bears some responsibility, it's still not ethical to take advantage of ignorant people. If one is going to take advantage of ignorance, at least don't profit from the sales of live animals. Sell cars, or something... ANYTHING else. I guess I differentiate between "legal" and "ethical." Just because something is legal doesn't make it ethical. By the same token, just because something is illegal, I don't believe it is automatically unethical. I, too, am a "thief" (and proudly so) when it comes to animal welfare (not animal rights which is a whole totally different can of worms) and will and HAVE taken a dog from an irresponsible owner. Yes, I sleep just fine at night with that knowledge. Illegal? Certainly. Unethical? I guess it depends on your definition, but, to me, legal and ethical are two entirely different things.

But I digress...

Anyway, I am always willing to educate myself about things I don't know much about, so I was hoping you were going to be shedding some insight as to why it's not as bad as one might perceive about animal auctions. That's why I didn't respond immediately. I was thinking perhaps I would learn something. Basically, all I've learned is that it's legal and other people do it and people are going to buy live animals, ANYWAY, so [b]you[/b] might as well capitalize on it, too. How disappointing!

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Guest Anonymous
replies mingled in

[quote name='Reality']First, do YOU know how many animals are 'rescued' from auctions every year?

[u][b]Yes I have a good idea the numbers are lots lower than those of dogs being purchased by the kind of people who shouldn't own a pet rock let alone a dog[/b][/u]
Now, compare that number to the number of animals -purebred or otherwise 'rescued' that have not been auctioned.

[u][b]Hmm many of those go through pet stores or classified ads - so what is your point its ok for you because someone else does it - nope thats just saying your ethics are no better than the other no ethics people.[/b][/u]

People buy items from auctions for many, many different reasons -location, convenience, easy terms, good bargains, availability....the list goes on and on.

[u][b]It certainly does - they buy them by auction because they cannot get them locally - with animals that sure makes you wonder why now doesn't it?[/b][/u]
They buy from newspaper classifieds, stores, and every other imaginable venue for the SAME REASONS.

[u][b]So you advocate ignorance and stupidity in buyers of animals?[/b][/u]

The animal breeder or seller at the far end of an auction is no more likely to be abusive or unethical than the one selling to a pet store, through a classified, through a web page, out of a box at the grocery store, or through any other venue.

[u][b]Actually the auction sales person is about the same as the mill selling to petstores etc because they *are* the same person.[/b][/u]

Neither is the buyer -the buyer picking out an adorable shepherd puppy or exotic reptile from an auction is not doing anything different than the buyer who answers an ad and drives out to a barn, the buyer who orders through a web page, or the buyer who simply asks around town.

[u][b]Yep you are ignorant scum aren't you and hope that others as uneducated as you will give you money for your unethical auctions of animals. The people you want to attract sure won't find any ethical or responsible breeders near your business - but you don't care as long as you make a buck.[/b][/u]


Certainly there are unethical breeders -and unethical buyers. But those who are unethical are unethical regardless of the venue. Those breeders who run puppy mills are undeterred by the removing of any venue -if they can't sell at an auction, they will sell through classifieds, word-of-mouth, or off the back of a truck. If they fail to sell them, they'll dump 'em and breed more. Twenty years ago online auctions didn't exist -but puppy mills darn sure did. They did a brisk business selling through ads in magazines, from signs on the side of the highway, through word-of-mouth, and even postcards on bulletin boards.

[u][b]So its your job to help them instead of impeding their business - uh huh unethical really does cover it nicely.[/b][/u]

Same with buyers -if they can't buy from a particular venue, they'll buy from another. If they're really as abusive as everyone thinks, what makes anyone think they BUY at all? A person who just wants a dog to kick will get one from SOMEWHERE...even if s/he has to steal yours. Nothing stops an unethical person from simply adopting from a rescue shelter or collecting strays and breeding their own.

[u][b]Oh so you think highly of people too - bad news for you the unethical person cannot adopt from many shelters or rescues and the good ones also make sure the animals that leave go already neutered same as the responsible breeders do - you really have no clue at all do you?[/b][/u]

To single out those buyers/sellers who use online auctions and proclaim them all unethical, abusive or inhumane is rediculous. They are as a group no more immoral, unethical or abusive to their pets than any other group. In my opinion, the whole lot of them should get together and take any "animal rights" group who makes these kinds of rediculous statements in public to court for defamation of character and libel.

[u][b]Ignorance is bliss according to you and you plan to prey upon that ignorance for a profit - how ummm yeah unethical of you <LOL>[/b][/u]

On the subject of health guarantees -yes, they are available. It's up to the buyer to ask questions of the breeder/seller, about the animal's health and other details. Before shipping, the seller has to have a vet's approval (no more than ten days in advance) before the animal can board the airplane. There are thousands of animals shipped every year in this country, and the fatality rate is extremely low -so low that the Post Office has openly admitted that PETA and the Humane Society have publicly lied about the situation (it's on their website). In most cases, a dog shipped from New York to LA lands on the same day -same as people.

[u][b]The post office does not ship animals. (Speaking of lying). No one knows what the rate of death actually is on all animals shipped as the scummy unethical people selling to pet stores simply write it off as a loss of a shelf item in transit. :-( Indeed airlines are getting very iffy about transporting personal pets because they don't want to be responsible for their care in the air - commercial shippers are ok because they don't give a d*mn about the animals being shipped.[/b][/u]

The seller can ask questions too -"Sir, I noticed you've bid on my beautiful Lab puppy. May I ask if you have a fenced yard? Can you afford to take care of him? I've a policy not to sell to those that don't meet my criteria." By writing detailed descriptions, stating what he expects of the buyer, and using a minimum of good common sense, sellers can insure that auction buyers are satisfactory with as much accuracy as by any other method. It is no different than conversing with a seller who answered a newspaper ad.

[u][b]Sorry that is illegal - if the item is at auction and the bidder has the money they have to sell.[/b][/u]

The feedback system works very well -if an animal arrives in bad health, dirty, or with other problems, the buyer can leave feedback that describes the situation. Ditto if a seller has to refuse to ship because the buyer has made statements that cause him to cancel the sale.

[u][b]Uh huh and exactly what good does that do the poor animal?[/b][/u]

All of these things mean that an auction -online or otherwise- is no more unethical than any other venue for the pet trade.

[u][b]Wrongo m'lad all this means is you don't like it when people notice how unethical you are![/b][/u]

In fact, while I'm on the subject, I saw some 'do-gooders' on another forum (who claim to care for animals) advocating the theft of a pet they decided was being abused just because the owners apparently didn't share their views of proper caretaking (by keeping the animal in the garage). 'Scuze me, but last time I checked theft was still not only illegal, but just plain WRONG. So who has the ethics problem?

[u][b]Both of you.[/b][/u]

Those who've decided that animal use = animal abuse have already made up their minds, and I'm certainly not going to change them. But don't accuse me of being unethical, inhumane, immoral or anything else just because I'll allow people to buy or sell their pets through my site.[/quote][b]
[u][b]Why not just state it like it is - you see an unethical way to make money and you are going to take it to please yourself and all your words to the contrary are just self serving fluff from an unethical business person who'd rather lie than admit the truth. Ebay has ethics and you don't - may your site fail miserably costing you all kinds of cash and ever increasing vists from the IRS.[/b][/u]
[/b]

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Guest Anonymous
[quote]so I was hoping you were going to be shedding some insight as to why it's not as bad as one might perceive about animal auctions. [/quote]

First, [b]Horsefeathers[/b] thanks for a very coherent and responsible answer! I appreciate your taking the time to explain your views without simply painting the issue and everyone involved with big black strokes.

I don't think auctions are as bad as some other venues -pet stores, for instance. I'll focus on online auctions, because I'm not real familiar with live auctions or how they work -I've been to a few, but it's been many years.

First, whenever I walk into a pet store, I want to take home everything! I pet the puppies, and see them bouncing on the couch in the living room, and instantly the wheels start turning...how much more dog food every week? How many more trips to the vet? Can I handle just one more spay/neuter trip this year?

Often, I feel an impulse to buy animals that I really know nothing about -on a recent trip to Petsmart, one of my daughters wanted an exotic lizard (a basilisk (?) I think). The girl at the store told us it would grow to about 18", and gave us a list of everything it needed. I honestly would've bought it, but stopped because I just couldn't comfortably afford it. It was so ugly it was cute, it seemed bored out of it's little mind, and it had an appeal that I couldn't deny.

When I got home, I looked it up on the 'net -and discovered these lizards can grow 5 feet long! Altogether the wrong size for me to handle. I was certainly happy to discover this before I owned the little thing -because I believe that purchasing any animal is a commitment for that animal's entire life. What would I have been able to do? I don't have a spare room for a lizard, I don't have an unlimited budget for crickets and other foods, I live 100 miles from the nearest pet store - in short, I wouldn't have been able to care for this creature.

The girl at the pet store certainly didn't care about that -she just worked there. She passed on the info she'd been given, and would've been more than happy to box him up and send him on his way. One less animal to feed, a smile from the boss, and room for something else! They ask no questions beyond your ID for your check or whether you'd like paper or plastic.

I'm not down on pet stores -I love 'em, but they're still just stores. Having owned a retail store for years, I understand their methods and problems very well. They have to purchase from breeders, feed & care for the animals until they sell, find homes for the ones that don't, and show a profit each and every day.

It's different on the 'net. Looking at a picture of a few cute little chickens or a beautiful irish setter up for auction may inspire warm fuzzy feelings -and maybe even an impulse to bid. But detailed care instructions, information about that animals needs and welfare, and information about the practical reality of owning any particular creature are only a few mouse clicks away. The information is freely available to anyone who has a computer...and if they didn't have a computer they wouldn't be there at all. Not to mention that it takes a certain level of education, knowledge and reasoning to be able to use an online auction for any reason. One has to have a computer, be able to use it, and be literate enough to complete the transaction -there are very few poverty-stricken rednecks with mean streaks on the internet. It's just not their kinda place to be.

I don't believe most people will place a bid for something knowing they have to pay for shipping, wait for it to be shipped, drive to the airport to pick it up, and then still deal with licensing, food, shelter and all the other 'extras' for an animal of any kind without a pretty good idea what they're getting into.

Before I decided to allow animals, I looked at a great number of sites that allow them. I looked very closely at the animals being listed, the kinds of people that seemed to be selling, and the ways they crafted their descriptions. Most of them are something like this:

[quote] German Shepherd to good home! I'm 80 years old and entering a nursing home next month. My children all live in apartments, and this dog is far too large for them to care for. Shep has been my constant companion since my husband Fred died 4 years ago. I will only allow him to go to a good home. You must have a fenced yard, no smoking, and be able to care for him for the rest of his life. I won't ship him -you'll have to drive to Rhode Island....etc, etc[/quote]

The point is, most of these people are using a venue which is available, inexpensive, gets the message to a huge number of people, and has a better chance of finding a home for their usually beloved pets. In most cases, they simply can't keep them, but can't stand the thought of them going to the Humane Society or a kill shelter. They've probably called every person they know, left ads all over the neighborhood, but have had no success. The net gives them a worldwide audience.

Certainly breeders sell too, but because of the AKC regulations against dogs, auctions aren't a very good venue for them -I think it's a shame, but I have no control over that. Most of the listings from breeders are for small animals like hamsters or rabbits, unusual animals like sugar gliders and hedgehogs, or reptiles -snakes in particular.

I believe most really serious breeders put up their own websites -it's cheaper in the long run, they have more control over how their animals are presented, and can concentrate on making themselves visible to the audience they think is ideal. That way, they don't spend as much time answering questions from complete neophytes, fielding comments from those who think they're unethical or inhumane, or dealing with the competition and disparity in prices that occurrs on auctions.

Purebred animals of any variety do not sell cheaply. I've read a great many websites by people making these claims, but simple observation doesn't bear that out. The bidding often starts very low; it's not unusual for a seller to begin bidding at a very low amount -even a penny. But nothing stays that way long -the final price is usually only a very few dollars less than the retail price in a store would've been.

For someone to say "Look -I can buy this tiger for only $100.00!" when the auction has a week to go isn't thinking it through. The tiger probably has a reserve price of several thousand dollars, the seller is cancelling the bids of anyone who doesn't meet his demands, and is not going anywhere until someone comes up with the right combination of money, credentials, experience and USDA approval. An animal like a tiger may be re-listed a dozen times before the final transaction takes place.

Once again, certainly there are unethical sellers -in every profession. I recently purchased a car through an auction that is a complete lemon -the seller lied about every part of it. I completed the transaction and nearly killed myself driving home. Yet, there's no outcry to stop used car dealers from using auctions.

Certainly animals have feelings, and cars do not. But animals also have the Animal Welfare Act, international import and export laws, strict guidelines for shipping and transport, animal control specialists in all 50 states just itching to remove any creature they think is being mistreated, and too many watchdog groups and neighborhood activists to even mention.

Last, but not least, my auction has ME (a real animal lover for my whole life), and I will keep a very close eye on what's going on. I have no qualms whatsoever about banning -or even prosecuting- a buyer or seller whom I think is unethical, inhumane, or acting illegally. If I see a seller offering to ship live kittens in a suitcase that person won't be a seller anymore. I have a phone, the number for the FBI, and I encourage my users to contact me for any reason -including reporting auctions they think may be problematic.

[/quote]

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Guest Anonymous
I'll start with this one:

[quote]The post office does not ship animals. (Speaking of lying). No one knows what the rate of death actually is on all animals shipped as the scummy unethical people selling to pet stores simply write it off as a loss of a shelf item in transit. Indeed airlines are getting very iffy about transporting personal pets because they don't want to be responsible for their care in the air - commercial shippers are ok because they don't give a d*mn about the animals being shipped. [/quote]

[url]http://www.usps.com/news/2001/press/pr01_liveanimal.htm[/url] The post office DOES ship live animals:

[quote]Live Animal Transport Update

In response to new Federal Aviation Administration restrictions, the Postal Service is adjusting the service it provides for the transportation of live animals.

The Postal Service will continue to accept live animals that do not require delivery within a 72-hour period, such as earthworms, lizards, snails, crickets, grasshoppers, and bees, which can move on ground transportation. Also, the Postal Service will continue to accept live animals for which the postage is $3.50 or less for shipment using air transportation.

The Postal Service will provide limited service for live animals for which the postage is more than $3.50 and that require air transportation, such as day-old poultry, adult poultry and queen honeybees. This service will be available to and from the airports listed below. The customer must present the mail to the AMC/AMF no later than the time listed below. All times are local. Service will be available from Monday through Friday from the following airports:

(Edited)


Mail containing live animals for which the postage is more than $3.50 will only be accepted at an AMC/AMF, a retail unit or P&DC as authorized by the AMC/AMF manager. Employees accepting live animals that must be moved on air transportation must contact the appropriate AMC/AMF to make sure adequate space will be available and that the animals will reach their destination within the required time frame (see DMM C022.3.0). Mailers sending live animals are also encouraged to contact the appropriate AMC/AMF to facilitate the delivery of service. Here is a list of AMC/AMF contacts in each city:

(Edited)


###[/quote]

[url]http://www.dot.gov/airconsumer/animals.htm[/url]
[quote]Over two million pets and other live animals are transported by air every year in the United States. Federal and state governments impose restrictions on transporting live animals. In addition, each airline establishes its own company policy for the proper handling of the animals they transport. As a shipper or owner you also have a responsibility to take the necessary precautions to ensure the well being of the animal you ship. [/quote]

[quote]As you are aware, the President signed the

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Guest Anonymous
[quote] the last newfoundland I adopted was from Canada and I live in PA. I drove there to see the parents, meet with the breeder, ask about health, look at the bloodlines. Anyone who really cares about getting a quality dog would do this. [/quote]

First, I think there's a bit of a myth in the world -that is, the myth that people who buy dogs from auctions want breeding stock. I don't think most of them do. I think most of the people who want to buy an animal of any kind from an auction are looking for a pet. First, the AKC has very strict rules about the dogs they license -and they don't allow dogs that have been sold at auction. A person serious about breeding any kind of dogs would consider that as shooting themselves in the foot. Next, the simple fact that you're absolutely right -if one wants healthy breeding stock, there's no substitute for a hands-on in the flesh examination of not only the animal in question but of both parents. Auctions simply don't allow that.

But when people are wanting pets, those considerations don't carry any weight. They want a dog that is good with the kids, good with other animals, can be walked without worries about bites or other problems, and will cuddle up with them in the evenings.

[quote]Second, if you knew anything about rescue, you would know that the reason they bought them was so they would not end up in the hands of another puppy mill but to someone who would stop making the dog reproduce, live in deplorable conditions and live a happy, healthy life.[/quote]

Okay, you're right -I don't know much about rescue in general. The only things I know about it came from the animals I've adopted. I've adopted a long list of dogs and cats, birds, a goat, two turtles....and have taken many other animals that were otherwise destined for the pound. But....

What made these people believe they would end up in a puppy mill? Unless they have the ability to see the future or had some special information, they didn't know where the animals would go -there's every reason to believe that many if not all would've gone to loving homes who just wanted pets. They wouldn't have gone to serious breeders (again because of the AKC), but why were they more likely to go to puppy mills?

I'm sorry, but somewhere in the back of my mind, all I can garner from this account is that it was a great public relations coup. By using all this money to buy these animals, they achieved the national exposure in the magazines, stroked the egos of those who are always looking for someone to look down on, and prevented any possible future success stories all at the same time. At no point will any letter to the editor come in, saying that someone bought their puppy at that auction and it's healthy, energetic, and had received excellent care. But, the fact remains they still bought from an auction. The auctioneer received his commission, the breeder/seller got his money, the rescue group got their animals...and I'm sure the donations haven't stopped pouring in yet.

[quote]Again I will ask, since you say that you are an animal lover, are you willing to take the dog back and exchange it within a year when the dog shows signs of SAS (Subvalvular Aeortic Stenosis), Cystinuria, Wobblers, hip and elbow dyslasia. I don't think you would. [/quote]

Let me clarify my position; I don't buy or sell any animals. I don't purchase the animals and then resell them, I don't write any contracts, do any negotiating or take any part in any transaction. The terms of a sale, including guarantees, exchanges, refunds and payments are between the buyers and the sellers.

My role is to maintain the website, pay for advertising, and make sure the buyers and sellers are able to contact each other. This is the only active role I play.

Although I may choose to use my own site to sell my own items, or even to buy items others post that I'd like to have, I do not sell animals.

[quote]Second of all, have you ever watched Dateline? They did a piece a few years ago on puppy mills. Nearly every pet store they showed bought dogs from these horrible places. [/quote]

Here, we have another problem. Journalism isn't unbiased. When a reporter decides to do an article about puppy mills, they find puppy mills -not reputable breeders. When they decide to interview pet stores who buy from puppy mills, they don't interview pet stores who don't. It isn't fair, but it's true. The reporter may have called 200 pet stores to find a handful who had purchased from a place that could be considered a puppy mill. But didn't bother to air many of those who didn't. This leaves a very one-sided view. It gives the erroneous image that most or all pet stores purchase from puppy mills!

Once again, I've never owned a pet store. But I owned a retail store for years -and never ceased to wonder at the people who brought in boxfuls of unadulterated JUNK they thought I would want to buy. I'm not kidding -dusty relics from the shelves at home; books they had purchased God-knows-where, cheap wholesale crap that they picked up from websites or clearance sales...it was unbelievable. And none of them had the faintest idea of the basic workings of retail. They honestly believed that if they could give me a 'good deal' that I'd want it.

But that's not how it works. As a retailer, I purchased books directly from the publishers, who sent me promotional materials, all the info about each one I'd ever need, and took back anything that didn't sell.

Pet stores have to work the same way. They can't keep a Sheltie puppy until it's ten years old -it has to sell within a few weeks. Ditto for hamsters, birds, ferrets or anything else. They have to purchase from reputable breeders who arrange for taking back animals which don't sell.

The breeders have to have USDA licenses and the animals have to be in good health with shots because if they weren't the insurance companies would refuse to cover them (nearly all retail stores have to carry at least $1,000,000.00 worth of insurance). No businessman in his right mind would take a chance at getting a letter saying that Mrs. Jones' kid was bitten, and the insurance won't cover it because the animal hadn't been examined by a vet. What if the animal that did the biting had been sold? Pet stores keep no records of who buys what -a bitten kid would have to immediatly start a rabies series! If that ever happened -even once anywhere- the surgeon general himself would be there the next morning!

[quote]First of all, no reputable breeder would ever sell to a pet store.[/quote]

Once again, though...I see dollar signs. If a breeder sells his puppies to a pet store, he only receives about half of the final value of the dog -the pet store gets the rest. An established hobby breeder realises very early that by selling the animals himself he can receive full retail value -and the best way to do that is by disparaging pet stores. A simple "Nah, you don't wanna buy from them -didn't ya see Dateline?" can net an exta $200.00 per puppy. Only the very largest breeders -like book publishers- who have a huge quantity of animals that must move very quickly really want to do the wholesale-to-a-store route. They'll accept less money per dog in exchange for the higher numbers of dogs sold.

[quote]I WOULD NEVER BUY A DOG FROM AN AUCTION!!! [/quote]

That is fine; at no point would I ever expect anyone to do anything they just feel is wrong. By allowing animals, I'm not insisting that anyone sell animals. It's a fine distinction, but it's important to me. Just because it's not against my rules doesn't mean it's mandatory. If you disagree with auctions than by all means don't use them. But don't refer to those who do as automatically inhumane, callous scum either -that just isn't fair.

[quote]I adopted all of my newfs from top of the line breeders. All of them are healthy, have wonderful temperments, and working attitudes. [/quote]

That's terrific! I have three wonderful German Shepherds that I think the world of. I got them all for free from various folks who could no longer care for them.

In every case, they were loved and wanted, but the owners needed to find new homes...and they used classified ads. I don't think they acted unethically, immorally, or in any wrong fashion at all. If they did, I'd be writing to the newspaper griping about classified ads for animals. But for some strange reason no one seems to harp on them. They've only chosen auctions as the format for griping.

[quote] All of breeders are willing to take my dogs back at anytime.[/quote]

I have to take exception to this statement. It's my firm belief that when you buy or adopt an animal that you make a committment to care for the animal for the rest of its life...in sickness or in health. To say that I only love my dog as long as he's healthy (enough for what?) is kinda strange to me. When I read this, I picture an animal suddenly becoming too lame to churn out another litter, and an owner suddenly wanting his money back. I'm sure that's probably not fair -and I'm not picking on you- but that's what I see in my mind's eye.

For a breeder to say he will take back a ten-year-old dog because it's developed a problem, I see a breeder making a show of faith -a sign you can buy with confidence. But for an owner to take back a ten-year-old dog speaks volumes about the animal being kept for reasons that have nothing to do with companionship.

[quote]I hope this helps people that read this forum, looking for a dog decide not to buy from an auction.[/quote]

Well, I guess we're just going to remain opposed on this issue.

So, all I can do is repeat my earlier question -what venue is appropriate? Are classified ads 'more moral' than auctions? Is telemarketing okay? How about business cards on bulletin boards at the supermarket? Are full page ads in magazines ethical? Why? or Why not? Where exactly do you think it's okay for a serious breeder to advertise his animals?

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Guest Anonymous
Dear Stupid Nonreality Unethical Auctioneer,
You are so full of it you should be auction it off instead of the living beings you propose to treat as shelf items.
You are on a dog forum - the USPS does not ship dogs and it does not ship live animals from everywhere it has a few specific areas that it will ship bugs and worms and fewer still where it will ship chicks. The death rate on those shipped animals is high (ever see the dead ones in a shipment of chicks?)
You want to know about dog auctions - go read about the reality of them at [url]www.nopuppymills.com[/url] - they are about disposal and acquisition of cheap breeding stock from and to mills. A few get out of that h*ll and into the pet world due to diligent effort by rescues from all over. Those are the lucky dogs.
You want to know where the pet stores get their dogs from - check that site nopuppymills as the ONLY source pet stores get dogs is from mills. NO responsible breeder will sell to a broker or a pet store.
AKC most certainly DOES continue to register dogs that are auctioned off and those sold through pet stores though they do lift the right to register from those that get caught falsifying records.
Your role as 'auctioneer' is to be an ethical representative of the goods being auctioned. Those goods should not include live animals if you want to be ethical. Apparently you don't desire to be ethical and currently live in a dream world where only nice breeders will be selling animals to nice homes which won't be the case - and if you wonder how I know that its because I know how to check up on the breeders currently selling online in places like Yahoo and buybelowcost - guess what they are millers and back yard breeders selling to the same with an occasional gullible pet person stuck with an unhealthy animal of poor temperament from one or the other of the sellers.
Sincerely,
A responsible ethical breeder and rescuer.

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Guest Anonymous
[quote]Dear Stupid Nonreality Unethical Auctioneer,
You are so full of it you should be auction it off instead of the living beings you propose to treat as shelf items. [/quote]

This is the last time you will refer to me in this manner. I came here asking for advice. I've gotten insults, name-calling and poison.

I have calmly stated my views, responded to every comment with the facts as I see them, and have invited further commentary. I have spent a large portion of my very busy day researching facts and backing up my statements with reason and references.

I will not stay for one more [i]ad hominem[/i] attack. By doing this, you have effectively damaged your credibility; given yourself an image of bitterness, nastiness and cowardice (by refusing to climb out from behind your "guest" moniker), and have poisoned the well of the entire conversation.

[b]Newfiemom[/b] spread some acid with her 'evil person' remarks, but you have gone completely overboard.


I read your website. I understand very clearly the points being brought up, and can only say that [b]"Yes, indeed unethical breeders/sellers and even buyers exist." [/b] I have agreed with this from the beginning and I've made no attempt to deny that fact. However, I've pointed out many times that these people will continue regardless the venue. In other words, [i]stop blaming the messenger services[/i]!

I asked you very plainly what you thought was an appropriate venue -afterall, I don't see dozens of threads decrying newspapers for allowing classified ads; I don't see dozens of websites bitching about the free-for-all ads on bulletin boards in grocery stores; I don't see dozens of people bitching about the webmasters who build sites for "puppy mills". I don't see anyone griping about the public database of breeders right here on this site.

But I see there are literally hundreds of them bitching about auction services!

I have a suggestion for you (which I know you won't like, but I haven't liked your attitude, so I guess this will make us even):

Stop bitching about the banks that hold the puppy mill's accounts.
Stop bitching about the janitors who clean the puppy mill's cages.
Stop griping about the pet stores that buy the animals.
Stop slinging mud at the people like me who [b]refuse[/b] to paint an [i]entire industry[/i] with the colors that only belong to a single group.

Instead:

Start putting the blame where the blame belongs.
Start griping about the people who own and manage puppy mills.
Start writing letters to them about how unethical you think they are.
Get a job as a USDA inspector and do your part to fix the problems.
Start griping about -and to- abusive owners for the real abuses they commit.

As far as I can see, all this mud-slinging leads to a self-fulfilling prophecy -and a vicious cycle. The more people gripe about pet stores and auction services, the fewer reputable breeders and hobby breeders will use them as an effective market for their products...and the more those markets will support puppy mills as a direct result. If a pet store cannot buy puppies from the local breeder because that breeder is tired of being called 'unethical', then they will buy from puppy mills and brokers because there are simply no other options. No pet store is going to go out of business to soothe the egos of a vocal few who have nothing better to do than muckrake.

When hobby breeders can no longer sell their expensive, carefully tended animals, they will go out of business, leaving puppy mills and incorporated brokers with a market entirely free of competition.

When pet stores are tired of constantly defending themselves against the 'puppy mill' virus, they will take one of three routes (routes which have already been taken by many companies selling other products):

1) Many will go out of business. Those who currently have very conscientious and ethical owners will go first, because they will be tired of the slander.

2) They will begin breeding their own animals -the back rooms will no longer be filled with boxes of fish food and quarantine cages; instead they will contain whelping boxes.

3) They will do as thousands of other companies with other products -selling wholesale directly to the public products that were bred, born, and raised in other countries. A "pet" will slowly become an imported luxury from a foreign country. It will arrive in a plain brown wrapper, pre-neutered so there will be no private breeding (with a little warning tag that someone somewhere has patented its genetics, the same way plants are).

Oh...yeah....there will be many who stop selling animals; ceasing to be 'pet stores' and becoming 'pet supply stores'. This trend has already begun, and I must admit I don't like the knell I'm hearing...and yes, I'll bore you with [i]why[/i].

What do you think happens when every animal available is "rescued" spayed or neutered, and then "adopted"? The number of breeding animals becomes much lower, right? And when those few breeding animals belong to breeders who produce fewer and fewer, those animals will become more and more [i]rare[/i]. This drives the price of the animals up -and when the only animals available come in two flavors -[b]sterile[/b] or [b]not[/b] (those which are not bringing even higher prices), breeding dogs will become the sole providence of the very, very wealthy. Many breeds may simple die out from not having enough wealthy 'fans'; and the plain ordinary mutt will become a thing of the past. After a few generations, your family pet may be an irreplaceable fond memory.

Of course, I do believe this is the final goal of PETA -they've admitted in the past that they disagree with the concept of pets. I used to get their newsletter when they stated very plainly that animals were never "intended" to be pets, but they've slacked off a little when they realised that 90% of their funding came from people who own pets!

So, [b]Guest[/b], I guess I'll just ask you one final question -although I noticed you've never answered any of the ones I asked before:

Do you simple believe that owning or selling pets of any variety under any circumstances is unethical?

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Guest Anonymous
I'm sorry. I'm a little lost.. could someone please tell me what he means by shipping and auctioing live animals!?

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Guest Anonymous
[quote name='"Reality"'][quote]
This is the last time you will refer to me in this manner. I came here asking for advice. I've gotten insults, name-calling and poison.

[b]How would you know if its the last time? :lol: Do consider exactly why you have gotten the hostility - all that was asked was that you attempt to be as ethical as ebay is on the subject. [/b]

snip mumbling on

I read your website. I understand very clearly the points being brought up, and can only say that [b]"Yes, indeed unethical breeders/sellers and even buyers exist." [/b] I have agreed with this from the beginning and I've made no attempt to deny that fact. However, I've pointed out many times that these people will continue regardless the venue. In other words, [i]stop blaming the messenger services[/i]!

[b]Its not my website just a good one on the subject that I frequently refer people to for their education.[/b]

I asked you very plainly what you thought was an appropriate venue -afterall, I don't see dozens of threads decrying newspapers for allowing classified ads; I don't see dozens of websites bitching about the free-for-all ads on bulletin boards in grocery stores; I don't see dozens of people bitching about the webmasters who build sites for "puppy mills". I don't see anyone griping about the public database of breeders right here on this site.

[b]You also don't see those people dropping by this board asking about what they are doing now do you?[/b]

[b]snip more stupid mumbling trying to justify being evil for profit[/b]

Do you simple believe that owning or selling pets of any variety under any circumstances is unethical?[/quote]

[b]I believe people should be able to find healthy sane pets from responsible breeders or responsible rescuers. I think auction sites, like stores, should refrain from selling living beings as it is not in the best interests of the animal or the buyers for them to do so.
You apparently think the only important thing is profit. It doesn't matter to me that you are not alone in feeling this way - I don't like any of you who think its ok to treat animals as shelf items. So once again I wish you years of harassment by the IRS. I've certainly helped some nasty mills into that particular situation before. :D [/b]

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Guest Anonymous
[quote]How would you know if its the last time?[/quote]

As I said before, I simply will not stay for it, or answer any more posts from anyone who wants to treat me this way. I've done nothing to deserve it, no matter how you feel.

In fact, I probably won't be back. I've accomplished my objective and I have no time for this.

I've received several well-thought out replies from people sharing their veiws, but overall I've received rude treatment. It does not motivate me to listen to anymore.

Good-bye to you, and good luck for whatever it is you're doing.

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Guest roo
I am afraid i am going to have to get on my high horse on this one.[b]
The Kennel Club UK, has a code of ethics that has to be adhered to, failiure can resort in a ban, from registering, breeding, showing, judging.
Number 9 of that code states.

OWNERS WILL NOT SELL ANY DOG TO COMMERCIAL WHOLESALERS, RETAILER PET DEALERS OR DIRECTLY OR UNDIRECTLY ALLOW DOGS TO BE GIVEN AS A PRIZE OR DONATION TO A COMPANY OF ANY KIND.

So only unethical breeders, puppy farmers ( as we call them in UK ) would
be interested in selling dogs or pups to a auction house.
The only people willing to supply, would be uncaring people, ( I refuse to call them breeders ) who don't give a dam about the animals and are in it only for the money.

We have had a spell on dealers in this country in the last year conning people into selling them their pups, only to find out 6+ months later that they have ended up in Japan, and now can not be traced. The dealer is an American man, who seems very plausable, and he too now can not be traced. This has left behind some desperately traumatised, breeders and stud dog owners.

You may be a dog lover, but please don't carry on with this idea, it will only cause distress and upset to hundereds of dogs, and caring breeders out there.

When I breed a litter, which is only when I want another dog, my babies will always be my babies and I will take them back. NOT JUST TO LOOK GOOD. But because I am a responsible caring breeder and as I said before they will always be my babies. ENOUGH SAID! :-? [/b]

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Guest Anonymous
[b]Newfiemom[/b] -no appologies neccesary. [b]Guest[/b] just finally got under my skin and I lost my temper. I know I should never take the posts on a forum personally, but sometimes I do, anyway.

Yes, this is a very passionate subject; people become quite zealous over their pets -me included.

I love my pets like the world -they are like part of my family.

I don't have a problem with differing viewpoints. I came here looking for advice, and am willing to listen. All I ask is that one put forth their view point in a reasonable manner, with logic, facts, and opinions that can be understood and -if not agreed with, at least empathised with.

The mud slinging and name calling is just unneccesary. I can discuss all day, I can debate, I can question and I can sometimes even be swayed (many people on forums have changed my mind about many things), but I just won't tolerate a complete stranger calling me 'scum' or anything else.

Perhaps I got off on the wrong foot here -breezing in upon a bunch of strangers, asking advice about a subject that carries such feverish controversy.

I really wasn't planning to be back, and I don't know what masochistic streak incited me to pop in here and look around, but when I saw the posts I did think I should address you. I'll stick around for a little while if I can keep the trolls off my back. I'm always willing to learn new things; and I do love animals of all kinds.

No matter what, good luck to you, and to your Newfoundlands -they are gorgeous dogs.

[b]roo:[/b]

[quote]We have had a spell on dealers in this country in the last year conning people into selling them their pups, only to find out 6+ months later that they have ended up in Japan, and now can not be traced. The dealer is an American man, who seems very plausable, and he too now can not be traced. This has left behind some desperately traumatised, breeders and stud dog owners. [/quote]

Can you tell me more about this? Maybe provide a link? It supports a theory of mine:

[quote]3) They will do as thousands of other companies with other products -selling wholesale directly to the public products that were bred, born, and raised in other countries. A "pet" will slowly become an imported luxury from a foreign country. It will arrive in a plain brown wrapper, pre-neutered so there will be no private breeding (with a little warning tag that someone somewhere has patented its genetics, the same way plants are). [/quote]

I'm beginning to believe this will the future of dog breeding. When "animal rights" begins to mean animal laws, conditions, restrictions and policies so narrow and strict that those who depend on it can no longer survive, they will simply take their business overseas where those laws won't exist. Japan is a perfect candidate, because cats and dogs are just seen as food. They don't have the pet-friendly culture that we do.

Thousands of companies have moved their factories into Mexico, China, Japan, and other countries to take advantage of cheap labor, lax laws and exploitable resources of all kinds. It seems only natural to me that the pet industry should follow. Groups like PETA with narrow agendas and strong-arm tactics (and what appears to be very little foresight) will help push it in that direction.

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Guest roo
Reality,
I have his name, can get his false address, have the names of the owners in Japan of 4 of the dogs. What is your theory? How much info do you want? If you think you can help in this matter I will give you all the information I can
Roo

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Guest roo
Mei Mei,
It was me Roo who said about a dealer sending dogs to Japan, I did not say that Japan didn't have dog lovers, the reason people are up in arms about this situation is because a con man dealer has lied and cheated his way into someones home, lied about the puppy, lied about where it is going, in one case forged the breeders signature on the export pedigree.
What is wrong with this situation not including all of the above is the fact that a breeder should be given the choice to say yes or no as to what country be it Japan, USA, Austrailia, Italy etc the puppy they have bred goes to. What sort of new owner would use such fowl means by employing a conman into purchases, and not even have the manners to contact the breeder and let them know they have the dog, how it is. We do not even know if the pups went straight to their new homes, or if they were auctioned at the airport, which has been known to happen in many
countries. I hope this clears it up for you a bit.
Roo

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Guest Anonymous
[quote]Reality,
Just to change a misconception...Japan is a dog friendly nation! Think about the Akita, the Shiba Inu and the Japanese Spitz! There is a big statue of a faithful Akita in Shibuya Station in Tokyo. I'll also mention the Tosa Inu, even though that conjures images of the disgusting (personal opinion here) sport of dog-fighting. But the Tosa itself is a gorgeous dog. Lots of dog lovers in Japan![/quote]

I always thought the Japanese kept dogs the way we keep pigs or chickens -"multi-tasking" pets eventually destined for dinner or other uses. Forgive me if I'm mistaken. I certainly don't intend to malign anyone, anywhere!

[quote]Reality,
I have his name, can get his false address, have the names of the owners in Japan of 4 of the dogs. What is your theory? How much info do you want? If you think you can help in this matter I will give you all the information I can
Roo[/quote]

My theory is simply that we will see more and more of this -that more and more people will begin breeding animals in countries which do not have our animal activists and ever-increasing licensing requirements.

We Americans have the misguided idea that if we put the manufacturer's of a rotten product -be it a dangerous pesticide or an inbred poodle on the hotseat, that they will go out of business and quit creating the product. But that isn't what happens. Instead, they just pack up and move to other countries, where they continue to create unabated and unchallanged.

I believe the commercial breeders will simply move out of the US more and more often, to set up shop in places where mentioning "animal rights" gets blank stares or outright laughter. There, they will be able to save labor costs, feed them cheap foods, keep them packed into runs with no outside exercise, whelp them repeatedly with no rest, and owe no explanations to anyone -there simply are no laws in many of those places to get in the way. They won't have to worry about 'whistle blowers' or picket lines or USDA inspections.

Anyway, I have absolutely no idea what to advise about your situation. I have to say that since the breeder sold the dog, it became the property of the person who bought it. It may have been an impolite and uncouth thing to take the dogs out of country without the breeder's approval, but I don't think it was illegal. The forgery however, would be...and there's a good chance of being able to prosecute for that!

[quote]Thanks Reality...Please do stick around. All I can say is at least we have the guts to stand by our convictions and use some kind of name to identify ourselves. Guest has been creating drama in this forum. I am sorry for his or her actions.[/quote]

You do not owe an apology for anyone. [b]Guest[/b] said what s/he wanted to say; and is solely responsible for his/her own words.

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Guest roo
Reality,
Yes forgery can be prosecuted, but you have got to find him first, and get his real name. But I don't agree with your theory, sorry!!!!
This man knew what he was looking for, he could easily pick exactly what
he was after, ALL the dogs came from very good bloodlines, bar one, and everyone breeders, studdog owners, dam breeders would not have sold to Japan, out of personal choice not because they think the dog will be eaten. This was totally planned, and i have just heard he is here again, this time using a different name. We wil have to wait and see what happens this time.
As to whoever buys can do what they want, in a way yes, but fraudulent information and reasons had been given in the first place. I feel very strongly for the people this has happened to, for them it is not something they can just say oh well **** happens, never mind la dee dah.
It is a very serious matter, maybe when your dog auctions get underway, and the question "have you got a fenced garden "occurs, and you then realise that 45+ plus dogs have been shipped out to another counrty, lets say Japan as you said they are kept like pigs or chickens for th dinner table, you will then say oh well sucha nice sort of person, wanted a dear pet, oops he has purchased 45+ from me and sent them elsewhere. Never mind ****happens. I think not :x

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Guest Anonymous
Ha Ha Ha DOSE IT REELY MATTER AS LONG AS THEY GOT THERE BUCKS

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