Puppy mills –
no thank you!

Say NO to trading –
Say YES to animal welfare

Checklist for buying a puppy:
Animal welfare or puppy mill?

Decision-making support for future dog owners


Can you see the mother?

Insist on seeing the mother. Backyard breeders will not show you the mother. If they do show you the mother, look to see if it treats the puppies in a loving way, if the small ones are allowed to suckle. Do you have the feeling that they are her puppies? Does the animal push the puppies away, is she disinterested, does she go away? Then you can assume that it is not the mother of those puppies. The breeder is showing you an alibi bitch. Do not buy!


The price

The price for a purebred dog from a recognised breeder starts at 600 euros. Anything that is well below that is not a normal market price and unreliable. Of course the price is only a limited indicator for the quality of a breeder. Backyard breeders have increased their prices. Reliable breeders can be found by getting in touch with the German Dog Federation (Verband für das Deutsche Hundewesen: www.hier-ist-mein-welpe.de.


Where and how are they sold?

On parking lots, at markets, in dirty yards? Out of a bus, car boot, cardboard box or wire cage? A further sign of puppy mills. Careful with offers on the internet!


Does the seller ask any questions?

A reliable breeder wants to know about the family and the home that the puppy will be placed in. If no questions are asked, then the breeder is only interested in money.


Is there a sales contract?

If there is a contract, does it include the name, address and a liability clause for the seller? Does it state the price?


What do the puppies look like?

Are the puppies thin or bloated by worms? Do they just lie in the corner apathetically or do they show any kind of unusual behaviour? Is their fur dirty and dull? Do the puppies whimper or do they not make any sound at all? Is there water and food close by?


The offer

How many different breeds is the breeder offering? Beware if there are more than two breeds and more than four litters a year. This is an indication that this is not a serious breeder but simply someone who wants to produce puppies, which often goes hand in hand with a great deal of suffering for the animals.


The negotiations

This often requires a number of visits and often takes several days. The dog and the new owner need to get used to one another and see if they can get along. A walk will show if the dog is used to walking on a leash and how he will react to his new environment. These visits should include consultations to make sure that the new owner is making the right choice.