March 21, 2005 |
The billboard welcomes visitors to Lancaster County, but it isn't meant to increase tourism. Main Line Rescue, which paid for the folksy sign, wants to warn visitors about an activity that doesn't get the same attention as shopping outlets and Amish farms. "Welcome to scenic Lancaster County, home to hundreds of puppy mills," reads the sign on the eastbound Pennsylvania Turnpike between the Lebanon/Lancaster and Reading/Ephrata exits. The animal welfare group hopes the sign raises awareness of a persistent problem in rural Lancaster County: the mass production of puppies in inhumane and sometimes illegal kennels.
July 22, 1991 |
Mary Panebianco cradled her new puppy, Dixie, as it coughed up blood onto the kitchen floor. The Panebiancos, of West Chester, had bought the chow/shepherd mix three days before at a Chester County kennel. That April night, Dixie died. "I thought I was strong, but that really broke me," said Panebianco, who has a 2-year-old daughter. "I hope I never have to see or hear anything like that again. " The family veterinarian said Dixie died of parvo, a viral disease often caused by poor nutrition and parasites.
May 2, 2012 |
What's Gov. Corbett got against puppies? After years of complaints from dog lovers and people who unknowingly purchased sick and dying pets that had been raised inside puppy-mill cages no bigger than a rabbit hutch, Pennsylvania passed a 2008 law ensuring humane treatment for tens of thousands of kennel dwellers. That law, aimed at ridding Pennsylvania of its reputation as the worst puppy-mill state in the East, has served as a model for 20 other states. But Corbett isn't interested in its enforcement.
July 31, 1990 |
Terra was a disaster. Her front legs were crooked, her teeth didn't bite right, and her white Maltese face was stained around the eyes from a condition that made her tear ducts work overtime. Worse, a congenital skin disorder had caused her to chew off most of the curly white hair on her rump, and she chased herself frantically in a tight, painful circle when Marlene Harris put her into her cage. "She'll be put to sleep," Harris sighed. "It's heartbreaking, because we've gotten real attached to her. " A dozen other dogs yelped and bounced against their cage doors in the small Parsons Humane Society shelter.
July 5, 2007 |
At the end of country lanes, behind tall fences, and inside picturesque barns lies Lancaster County's dirty little secret: thousands of purebred dogs - whose offspring sell for hundreds of dollars at pet stores in Philadelphia and elsewhere - living in Dickensian conditions: undersized wire cages; no exercise; minimal, if any, medical care. Those images - well documented by undercover video and humane officers over the last 25 years - prompted animal lover and Old City gallery director Jennifer Yaron to stage what may be the first-ever exhibition dedicated to drawing attention to the plight of dogs in commercial kennels, known across the animal-welfare community as "puppy mills.
March 29, 2006
GOV. RENDELL has taken on possibly one of the most volatile and emotional issues of his tenure: puppy mills. These despicable places, where dogs are bred and raised in unsanitary, crowded and disease-prone conditions, flourish in Pennsylvania, specifically in Lancaster County. Known for lush farms and its Amish population, the county and its more than 240 puppy mills have helped make Pennsylvania "The Puppy Mill Capitol of The East. " It's a shameful reputation. Rendell, a dog-lover himself, wants to change that.
September 12, 2015 |
The Camden County Freeholders announced Thursday that they intend to introduce and vote on a resolution that would prohibit pet stores from selling animals obtained from so-called puppy and kitten mills. Instead, the shops would have to get their dogs and cats from animal shelters or rescues. Freeholder Jeff Nash, sponsor of the resolution, said he is confident it will pass when voted on next Thursday. The resolution is named Norman's Law after Nash's Labrador retriever mix, which he adopted from a shelter.
September 20, 2015 |
The Camden County freeholders voted unanimously Thursday to prohibit pet stores from selling animals from puppy mills. Called Norman's Law after the Labrador retriever mix Freeholder Jeffrey L. Nash adopted from a shelter, the measure calls for shops to sell dogs and cats obtained from animal shelters and rescues. "As we said last week, we are going to stand up for animals of this county and ensure no one is profiting off of the inhumane treatment of puppy mills," said Nash, sponsor of the resolution.
December 17, 1995
How sick is that doggie in the window? That - rather than the melodically famous "how much?" - should probably be the first question asked by local dog buyers. As vividly documented by Inquirer staff writer Karl Stark last Sunday, chances are all too good that a puppy bought from a pet store or large-scale breeder in Pennsylvania will have health or temperament problems. Pennsylvania breeds the most dogs of any state on the East Coast, and too many of them come from "puppy mills," mass operations where dogs are carelessly bred - leading to defects or nasty dispositions - or raised in crowded, dirty conditions that promote viruses.
April 29, 2008 |
Recently, viewers of the Oprah Winfrey Show tuned into a widely publicized television show devoted to exposing horrific living conditions and abuses in puppy mills. Unfortunately, puppy mills in Pennsylvania played a major role in this broadcast. Several Pennsylvania puppy mills, where there was widespread neglect and deplorable conditions, were toured. Small dogs were stuffed into rabbit hutches. Kennel operators dragged dogs by their front legs. Of the 20 dogs that were rescued, nearly all were suffering from dental disease.