How Much Is That Doggie In The Window?

"How Much Is That Doggie in the Window"

How much is that doggie in the window,
The one with the waggley tail?
How much is that doggie in the window?
I do hope that doggie's for sale.

I must take a trip to California
And leave my poor sweetheart alone;
If he has a dog, he won't be lonesome,
And the doggie will have a good home.

Repeat Refrain:

I read in the paper there are robbers
With flashlights that shine in the dark;
My love needs a doggie to protect him
And scare them away with one bark.

I don't want a bunny or a kitty,
I don't want a parrot that talks;
I don't want a bowl of little fishies
He can't take a goldfish for walks.

Repeat Refrain:

Words and Music by Bob Merrill
Recorded by Patti Page in, 1953

This catchy little song was recorded back in 1953. Back then it was filled with such innocent lyrics. Today, not so much. How much does that doggie in the window cost? So much more than anyone could have imagined! Puppy mills have evolved across this country resulting in high prices for cute, cuddly puppies in just about every breed imaginable. Those puppies now come with a hefty price paid not by shoppers, but by dogs. Today’s puppy mills are large-scale commercial dog breeding operations where profit is given top priority over the well-being of the dogs.

As I sit here writing this article Kirby is sound asleep stretched out on my comfy bed.  He ate his normal meal of dehydrated all natural dog food around 6:30 p.m..  Over the evening he enjoyed two duck jerky treats and a carob cookie.  He went outside a few times to do his business and enjoy some fresh air.  His green frog is laying near him and several of his toys are still strewn across my living room rug where they were left when we went to bed.  He has a good life.

Puppy mill dogs aren't so lucky.  They live in overcrowded and unsanitary conditions with little to no veterinary care, food, or water. They are usually kept in cages stacked in columns to minimize space with wire flooring which is painful for their paws and bodies. Since cleanup takes time, they are often left to sit or lay in their own feces and urine. Baths and simple grooming are also time consuming chores left undone. These animals never get to feel the sun on their bodies. They never get to experience treats, toys, or exercise. They never get to discover what a hug feels like. They never get the chance to experience love.

The females are bred over and over with little to no recovery time between litters. After a few years they are physically depleted to the point they can no longer reproduce so they are often killed. Do you realize the mom and dad of that adorable puppy in the pet store window will never make it out of the mill alive? Do you realize that the puppies born with major physical problems that make them un-sellable to pet stores are destroyed?

Illness, disease, fearful behavior and lack of socialization with humans and other animals are common characteristics of these puppies. Some of the congenital and hereditary conditions these puppies can have are Epilepsy, heart disease, kidney disease, musculoskeletal disorders such as hip dysplasia and luxating patellas, Endocrine disorders such as diabetes and hyperthyroidism, blood disorders like anemia, deafness, eye problems such as cataracts, glaucoma, and progressive retinal atrophy, and respiratory disorders

Then there are the puppies waiting in pet stores who already have Giardia, Parvovirus, Distemper, upper respiratory infections, kennel cough, Pneumonia, mange, fleas, ticks, intestinal parasites such as heartworm, and/or chronic diarrhea.

There are many organizations working to put these puppy mills out of business. Slowly they are winning the war yet there are still so many puppy mills out there to be shut down. So what can individuals do? Don’t buy any puppy from any pet store! If your local pet store sells puppies then don’t shop there – take your money elsewhere and let them know why. Don’t buy a puppy from any place that doesn’t let you see its entire facility and meet the mother dog. This includes websites that sell pets online since there is no way of knowing if such businesses are what they claim. Responsible breeders always want to meet you before selling you one of their puppies so they know it is going to a good home. In fact, the good ones will want you to return the puppy to them should you ever decide you can’t keep it.

So next time you are looking to add a new puppy to your family, remember this slogan: Don’t shop, Adopt! Visit your local shelter, check out great websites like PetFinder, or find a reputable breeder.

And that catchy little song? The lyrics were later changed to this version:

"Do You See That Doggie in the Shelter"

Do you see that doggie in the shelter
the one with the take me home eyes
If you give him your love and attention
he will be your best friend for life

In each town and city across the nation,
there's so many dogs with no home
Hungry with no one to protect them
lost in this world all alone

Repeat chorus

Collies and beagles by the roadside
puppies and dogs in the street
Once they are rescued by a shelter
they'll finally get something to eat

Doggies and kitties who are homeless
with sad eyes and tails hanging down
Let's do what we can to show them kindness
and let them know that they've been found

repeat chorus

Today is the last quarterly awareness day in 2011 for Blog the Change for Animals whose main focus of action right now is to make consumers aware of the puppy mill puppies still being sold at Petland USA.

Act Now!

  • Paste the following across your social media outlets:
Tell @Petland USA to Stop Selling Pets! Sign the Petition: #BTC4A  #Change

P.S. October is Adopt a Shelter Dog Month!

Leave us a comment to let us know you stopped by then check out these other amazing bloggers who are being the change for animals...
In 2010 a large puppy mill was busted in Mississippi - you can read the firsthand account from HSUS here.