Animal Legal Defense Fund Suit over Weak Puppy Mill Regulations Moves Forward

Posted on May 19, 2015

For immediate release:

Megan Backus, ALDF
Lisa Franzetta, ALDF


PHILADELPHIA — Today the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania allowed a lawsuit filed by the national nonprofit Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) to move forward against the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. Last summer, ALDF sued the Department for passing watered down regulations that gutted Pennsylvania’s historic “Dog Law.” The court found that “judicial scrutiny is required,” given the Department’s passage of weak regulations that ensure the continued suffering of mother dogs and their puppies despite state laws that require greater protection. Moreover, the Court observed, dogs and those who ultimately purchase them are the obvious beneficiaries of the health and safety protections provided by the Dog Law, so ALDF’s lawsuit just makes sense.

Where the state’s Dog Law requires nursing mothers and puppies to have unfettered access to an outdoor exercise area, the Department’s regulations allow nursing mothers and puppies to be caged all day; and while the law requires the elimination of wire strand flooring, the regulations allows puppy mill owners to confine dogs on this notoriously painful material. Wire flooring leads to severe injuries including splayed feet, cysts on paws, and painful abrasions. The discomfort of living in such conditions has been linked with permanent behavioral issues, sometimes so severe the afflicted dog must be euthanized. The Department has also drastically reduced exercise space requirements for nursing mothers. Because mother dogs are bred twice a year, they spend more than half their lives in restricted enclosures with painful flooring and inadequate space to move around. Pennsylvania confines more than 100,000 dogs in kennels.

“Today the Commonwealth Court is making sure Pennsylvania is held accountable for failure to follow its own law and protect nursing mothers and their puppies,” said Stephen Wells, executive director of ALDF. “The time has come to put an end to puppy mill breeders, and this suit will finally give the Dog Law teeth.”

A copy of the complaint is available by request.

19 thoughts on “Animal Legal Defense Fund Suit over Weak Puppy Mill Regulations Moves Forward

  1. Lisa says:

    Show love, show respect, show humanity…stop animal abuse and exploitation

  2. Tina Max says:

    Pennsylvania should be held accountable for their actions. If they are compassionate, what do they have to hide?

  3. Barry Warren says:

    All states need to take this on!

  4. Lauri MacLean says:

    Why doesn’t the State of Pennsylvania want to protect dogs? It’s time to stop this cruelty once and for all.

  5. Charlotte Palermo says:

    This must stop, I dare say the breeder should have to live like that for a week

  6. Tom Buckley says:

    Congrats ALDF, and keep up the good work!

  7. gay pawlak says:

    Hold all states accountable and close puppy mills

  8. Lois.goldman says:

    penna has a huge amount of Amish puppy mills plus many others. They are treated in the most in humane way. The y are like a crop of lettuce to these people. The are used over and over again till they die.

    STOP the abuse. Stop the abuse. stop the abuse. NOW

  9. gladys gauci says:

    Its time people stopped abusing animals and making money out of them.

  10. sherry says:

    Close them all down. Animals should have rights.

  11. Kalyn says:

    Every living being has the right to live a good quality life. Those who abuse other living things for their own selfishness and financial gain have a mental illness and should be dealt with appropriately. They should not be able to have the responsibility to have or take care of animals. No living thing should have to suffer because of someone’s greed or ignorance

  12. I hate puppy mills and don’t understand why they still exist. They are torture mills for dogs. What kind of people are we to let this continue ??? Let these bastards go get a job like everyone else to make a living !!! Why should animals have to suffer just so they can keep a roof over their sorry asses ???

  13. sherry says:

    Animals should have rights.

  14. Karthik Seyfried says:

    The facts: Penna is an agricultural state, dogs are considered a crop as well as property, and breeders have lots of money and make political donations. The Dept of AG Dog Law has an alleged history of being in bed with the breeders. The kennel fees are ridiculously low and anyone can “have” up to 26 dogs per year without even needing a kennel license.
    We hear people say that PA has the best laws for puppy mills in the country. Well if the enforcement is anything to go by, god please continue to help the dogs in these mills. And by the way, don’t forget the people who continue buying from pet stores and online puppy “stores”. They are as much to blame.

  15. Pennsylvania is the Worst and is known as the puppy mill capital of the world. The Amish are also know as puppy mill money hungry sick abusive breeders. Why can’t authorities go to these places and arrest them. They advertise make an appointment to purchase and take them down arrest them.

  16. karen mignona says:

    Close all puppymills

  17. ElleN Ritsos says:

    Must end. Must !! Please

  18. Rose Hunter says:

    We are their voice! We must protect our animals from the greedy disgusting humans that care only for the $$$$!!!!!!

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