Permission to cross post from Lets Discuss JudgingLetters to the Editor are welcome and printed without editing. Civil discourse is expected as a criteria for printing. As a matter of courtesy, the person whose views are being discussed will have the opportunity to preview and answer any questions posed. Opinions expresses are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the views of the Barker.
May 6, 2009
To the Barker:
I am writing to express a divergent view on the legislation, recently signed into laws, intended to protect dogs and eliminate puppy mills.
By way of background, I am considered by some in the Club to be an auxiliary member - my partner Tonya Gisselberg, being a member and active in AKC trials and shows. Views expressed in this letter are mine, not necessarily Tonya’s.
I have read the legislation and fail to see how it impacts anyone with a reasonable number of intact dogs or bitches. My only reservation about the law, in fact, is that it does not include pet stores. I am shocked that the President’s Message in the May BARKER implies pet stores are allies. Pet stores that sell dogs [excepting those that find homes for rescue dogs] are a big part of what keeps puppy mills in operation.
Of course, I realize this legislation will not, by itself, shut down all the puppy mills. That will happen only when the market for their “product” dries up.
What disturbs me most about the club’s stance on this legislation is the message it sends our legislators and the general public. It is disingenuous to claim the “slippery slope” argument, that this is part of the PETA agenda for no more pets. Support of the legislation would have been a great opportunity for the Club, and the AKC, to educate the public about the horrific conditions of puppy mills, that dogs in pet stores often come from and the high risk of getting an unhealthy puppy, the importance of getting a pet from a responsible breeder - people such as members of Sammamish Kennel Club!