The Pet Store Problem
Are Pet Stores inherently “bad”?
They sell a product that people apparently want, and they sell these “products” at very low prices. What’s wrong with that?
Well, it’s no different really than a used car lot that sells cars they say are perfect, but turn out to be clunkers. In both cases, the inherent flaws in the “product” aren’t visible and won’t come to the attention of the new owner for quite some time. Another analogy might be stores that sell cigarettes. They’re also selling a product that people want (or need), but this product in dangerous. But the danger isn’t immediately obvious, and the cost to the person buying the product is hidden, and the cost to our society is obscure.
So yes, Puppy Stores, stores that sell cigarettes, and used car salesmen selling poor quality cars are all inherently “bad”.
But the worst thing about Pet Stores is that their products are living beings. And they are the final retail outlet for an industry that is an abomination.
So the puppies, after being born and raised in these conditions:
Are then put in a truck with hundreds of other dogs and shipped around the country. and then into cages that are similar to the ones seen in the Puppy Mills. But the dogs get cleaned up, there are less per cage, and the cages might be plastic or steel instead of plywood. The ones that didn’t make the trip are disposed of. The ones that arrive sick are cared for as best as possible by the untrained, uneducated, underfunded staff. Every penny spent on a puppy’s care is less profit to the Pet Store at the time of sale. The Pet Store’s only purpose is to move those puppies out of the store as soon as possible for the most amount of money that can be had from any unsuspecting prospect.
This is the chain of pain. Born in misery, put in trucks all too reminiscent of the cattle cars of WWII, and shipped to the last stop on their journey before hopefully being sold to a good home….. if they haven’t died somewhere on the way, or in the Pet Store.
But every chain has it’s weak links, and we’ve identified the weak links in this chain. And if we are successful in breaking these links, the whole industry will collapse.