Monday, October 21, 2013

Warren Animal Control Officer Commended



Warren Animal Control Officer Commended for ending pet store neglect at Greenwoods Pets & Plants

Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan, a grassroots group dedicated to public education about the suffering of animals in puppy mills, commends Officer Lisa Taylor of Warren Animal Control for taking the lead in ending chronic animal neglect at Greenwoods Pets & Plants, a retail pet store at 13983 E. 9 Mile Rd. in Warren. On October, 7, 2013 the store’s owner, Dennis Jones, was arrested for violating his probation terms restricting him from possessing animals only a month after being sentenced by Judge David Viviano on animal cruelty charges.

“We are grateful to Officer Taylor for her dedication to the protection of animals in Warren, including those in pet stores,” said Pam Sordyl, founder of Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan. “We hope that other Michigan animal control and law enforcement officers will follow her lead in being more proactive in enforcing our state’s animal cruelty and neglect laws.”

On September, 19, 2013, a member of Puppy Mill Awareness observed a loose rooster in the fenced in lot of the store and notified Officer Taylor. This appeared to be the same rooster that was seized earlier by animal control. Upon discovering that a cockatiel bird had also been sold at the store the previous day, Taylor quickly contacted the prosecutor and probation officer who conducted an inspection. They found that many of the birds seized from the store earlier in the year on animal cruelty charges had been returned to the store by those that had completed adoption contracts. 

In May of 2013, Officer Taylor was instrumental in having all of the animals seized from the store because of violations of the state’s animal cruelty law. In the store, two cockatiels were found dead, several animals were crammed into a single cage, birds, reptiles, kittens and a puppy required urgent veterinary intervention, and some had upper respiratory infections. In addition, the toe of a bird had to be amputated due to neglect, a python was discovered with an open wound, and a rooster was found emaciated. 

Following the recent probation violation investigation, Taylor convinced the owners of the store to sign over the animals to the custody of the city, including more than eight birds, a cat and two roosters. The store is now up for sale.

After the store sold a potbellied pig named “Chumbley” in 2010 to a family that was not allowed to keep him because of restrictions on owning farm animals in Warren city limits, Taylor agreed to keep a closer eye on the store and respond to complaints outside of her assigned area. In 2011, Taylor pursued felony animal cruelty charges against the store after a goat on store property was found to have a serious urinary tract blockage and would have died without prompt veterinary care. 

Puppy Mill Awareness encourages the city of Warren to take the protection of animals in pet stores one step further and an adopt a Humane Pet Acquisition ordinance that would prevent the retail sale of cats, dogs, rabbits, long-lived birds and large-reptiles within city limits. We also ask that the city encourage its residents to instead adopt animals at local rescues, sanctuaries and animal shelters instead of buying them from pet stores.

Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan is working to end the mass production of dogs in commercial kennels, or "puppy mills.” Our mission is to educate the public about the cruel cycle of commercial dog breeding and the pet store link. Read more at www.meetup.com/puppymillawareness.
 



Sunday, October 6, 2013

The Family Puppy Not Welcome In Toledo


 
About 70 Toledo area residents protested at the Westfield Franklin Park Mall on October 5, 2013. The mall signed a new lease with Michigan’s largest chain and supplier of puppy mill dogs – The Family Puppy. The store has a history of working with bad commercial breeders with violations to the Animal Welfare Act. Even when the federal inspector tells them to treat an animal in pain in suffering, they ignore the inspector. These breeders do not listen to The Family Puppy – they don’t’ care about their standards. The store ends up dropping the breeder because we exposed them, not because of the violations.

Contrary to The Family Puppy’s claim that “we only use breeders that will meet our standards, and those standards are above those of the Animal Welfare Act”, 14 of the 16 primary suppliers have been cited for violations to the Animal Welfare Act and many have been chronic offenders.  Some violations include shelters with temps exceeding 87 degrees, excessive feces, no heat, unlicensed personnel performing surgeries, unattended bite wounds, poor ventilation, feet dangling in wire floors, dirty dogs, accumulated grime and lack of veterinary care.

The Family Puppy states they know how to screen a breeder because the co-owner has “been working with breeders for 35 years”, yet neither owner carries any professional credentials in the fields of animal husbandry and disease control.  The majority of Indiana USDA Licensed breeders - who on average, house 52 animals with 8-16 different breeds - also lack professional credentials in these fields.

According to recent inspection reports, two primary suppliers for The Family Puppy are not adhering to directives from federal inspectors or following rules as mandated under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA):

  • In 2012, The Family Puppy’s largest supplier, Marlin Bontrager of Rome City IN, was cited for direct veterinary care violations and when the inspector returned there were six more violations including more veterinary care related violations.

  • Two other main suppliers, Lavern Whetstone of Goshen IN and Verlyn Weaver of Topeka IN, were cited for not seeking veterinary for animals that were in pain and suffering. Whetstone was told by the federal inspector to seek veterinary care and the kennel instead had a “non-professional” remove the membrane of a dog with cherry eyes. Weaver was cited for a pregnant dog with a build up of thick dark crust on her teeth. The store continued to work with both breeders despite these continued violations. 

Jean Keating from the Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates is leading the campaign to block The Family Puppy from expanding in Toledo. Here is a link to her interview with Channel 24 at the protest.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Pollywood Pets Protest - Puppy Mill Awareness Day (Mt. Clemens)


Each year Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan rounds up as many concerned citizens as possible to make some big noise in a key city.  Sometimes the threat of a protest has given a store the boot! This year we choose Mt. Clemens – home to our state’s WORST pet store to kick off our new BOYCOTT POLLYWOODS PET Campaign. We are more than ready, are you?

Sunday, September 15, 2013 at 11:00 a.m.
Gibraltar Trade Center
237 N. River Road
Mt. Clemens, Mi   

We have protested at the Trade Center before, successfully ruining their 2010 Pet Expo and future plans for Pet Expos. This time we will be around much longer and already have scheduled events on our calendar: 10/8 A Town Hall, 10/21 and 10/28 City Commissioner Meetings and Holiday Protests. View our calendar here.

We won’t be “rescuing” any animals to prove our case (and we ask that you do not either). We are armed with years of inspections, almost 200 complaints and a new County Animal Control Officer (Jeff Randazzo) that knows the Pet Store Laws!!!

Learn more about Pollywood and our campaign plans on our website.

Are you ready to take action and support Jeff Randazzo! RSVP our PMA Day protest today!


Monday, August 26, 2013

Greenwood Pets Owner is sentenced for animal cruelty

The owner of a Warren pet store who pleaded no-contest to animal cruelty charges is prohibited from possessing animals for two years, under terms of probation set by a judge on August 22, 2013. Dennis Jones, owner of Greenwood Pets & Plants, also was sentenced to six months in jail but Macomb County Circuit Visiting Judge Thomas Brookover held the incarceration in abeyance to determine whether Jones complies with all terms of probation for two years. The judge ordered Jones to avoid alcohol, undergo substance abuse counseling, perform 60 hours of community service, and pay court costs.

Lapeer Animal Control Director Runs a Puppy Mill

This summer volunteers from the Lapeer County Animal Shelter and members of the community began reaching out to the Lapeer Board of Commissioners for help in addressing issues with the new Shelter Director and Chief Animal Control Officer. Problems range from lack of care on the weekends, rules changing on a whim, inadequate response to calls for animals in need and overall lack of compassion. The euthanization of five adoptable animals with plenty of shelter space sent crowds to July 25th meeting. At the same time Puppy Mill Awareness of SE Michigan exposed the Chief Officers breeding operation in a nearby county. The meeting minutes of a township meeting outlined she had approached them for information on how to set up a hobby dog breeding kennel. She was selling wholesale and bringing animals home from the shelter on occasion. The group launched an online petition asking the board to develop a conflict of interest policy and asked the chief to resign. The board hired an attorney to investigate all allegations. Last week the board stated the report is complete but was not ready to release it. This week, PMA delivered 296 Lapeer County resident signatures.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Michigan Pet Stores Linked to “Horrible Hundred” Breeder List

Five on the HSUS’s list of problem puppy mills sold puppies to Petland and The Family Puppy
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 17, 2013

CONTACT: Pam Sordyl, (734) 718-7100, pmamichinfo@yahoo.com

Novi, Mich. – Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan announced today that two Michigan pet stores receive puppies from substandard breeding facilities listed in a recent report by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) in May. In May,
The HSUS’s “Horrible Hundred” report lists 100 problem puppy mills, based on the conditions documented in publicly available inspection reports and on evidence obtained during HSUS research and investigations. According to interstate transport records, Petland in Novi and The Family Puppy in several east Michigan locations received puppies from five of the breeders on that list between 2009 and 2012.  

Michigan consumers need to know where these puppies are coming from,” said Pam Sordyl, founder of Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan. “The cute displays in pet stores don’t tell the whole story—that those sweet puppies may have come from horrific conditions in a puppy mill far away.”  

Petland is located in The Twelve Oaks Mall in Novi. The Family Puppy pet store operates five locations in the Detroit Metro area: Genesee Valley Center in Flint, Fountain Walk in Novi, Green Oak Village Place in Brighton, Macomb Mall in Roseville, and Oakland Mall in Troy. 

The Family Puppy received shipments of puppies from Marlin Bontrager of Rome City, Indiana a large-scale breeder. Shipping almost 250 puppies to The Family Puppy stores in 2011, made him the largest single supplier to the pet store chain. Bontrager made the Horrible Hundred list after multiple violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act, including repeat veterinary violations.

Petland Novi received shipments from four of the Horrible Hundred puppy mills between 2009 and 2012:
o       Darlene and Charlene Koster/Rainbow Ranch Kennel in Minneapolis, Kansas: Received an official warning from the USDA for violations of the Animal Welfare Act.

o       Kimberly Coleman/TLC’s Kennel in Clinton, Missouri: Fined $8,250 by the USDA for violations of the Animal Welfare Act

o       Ervin Raber/Golden View Kennels of Baltic, Ohio: Cited for “Potentially Devastating” violations of the Animal Welfare Act for the presence of zoonotic disease and sick and injured dogs.

o       Daniel Schlabach/Evergreen Designer LLC in Charm, Ohio: Cited for several violations of the Animal Welfare Act.

The case of a puppy from the last breeder on the above list, Daniel Schlabach/Evergreen Designer LLC of Charm, Ohio, demonstrates the hereditary health problems often associated with puppy mill dogs. In 2011, newlyweds Rod and Lindsey Rebhan purchased an Australian shepherd puppy named “Jack” for $1,000 from Petland Novi. “We considered Jack to be our first baby, our little boy," said Lindsey Rebhan. About a month after being purchased, Jack had his first seizure. After 25 seizures over the next four months, the Rebhans made the difficult decision to have him euthanized. Because Jack's epilepsy was so severe, his veterinarian said that the condition was probably hereditary. Petland Novi eventually refunded the sale price of the dog, but did not reimburse the Rebhans for the veterinary bills.

 


A dog photographed by a USDA inspector on May 2011 at facility of Daniel Schlabach (Evergreen Designers LLC) in Charm, Ohio
Lindsey Rebhan said that if they had seen the “Horrible Hundred” report they would not have gone to the pet store to purchase him. Photos of the kennel taken on November 2, 2011, show a dog with scabs and ulcerations on his muzzle; an underweight dog; four dogs with diarrhea; dirt and hair buildup in den boxes; two dogs with raw skin on their paws; a dog with a cloudy left eye; and a dog with a runny nose and a cough. 

In the May 9, 2013 press release about the “Horrible Hundred” report The HSUS called on authorities to more closely monitor these and the thousands of other facilities across the country, and urged state legislators to pass stronger laws to protect dogs in puppy mills. Most of the 100 facilities on the list have been cited repeatedly by federal or state inspectors for violations such as injured and sick dogs who had not been treated by a veterinarian, animals left in the freezing cold or blistering heat without protection, filthy conditions, and, in some cases, operators who performed surgeries on dogs without a veterinary license or shot and killed unwanted dogs.

There is currently no state law to regulate dog breeding facilities in Michigan or to protect consumers who purchase sick animals from pet stores or breeders. To address this oversight, Senator Steve Bieda (D-Warren) and Senator Rick Jones (R-Grand Ledge) have introduced the “Puppy Protection Act,” S.B. 117 and 118, to establish guidelines for housing, sanitary conditions, enclosure space, exercise, and veterinary care of dogs in all large-scale breeding kennels in Michigan, including those who sell puppies to pet stores and directly to the public. Senators Jones and Bieda have also introduced the “Pet Lemon Law,” S.B. 348, to alleviate burdening veterinary bills for dogs purchased from pet stores or breeders who turn out to have health problems. Both pieces of legislation are awaiting their first hearing in the Senate Agriculture Committee.

To learn more about the Horrible Hundred report, visit


Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan is working to end the mass production of dogs in commercial kennels, or "puppy mills.” Our mission is to educate the public about the cruel cycle of commercial dog breeding and the pet store link. Read more at www.meetup.com/puppymillawareness.

More photos available on request.

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Friday, June 28, 2013

Allen Mast USDA Kennel License Revoked


Michigan Dog Breeding Kennel’s USDA License Revoked following Animal Welfare Act Violations


Calhoun County dog breeder repeatedly failed
to provide veterinary care; dead animal found on property

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 27, 2013

CONTACT: Pam Sordyl, (734) 718-7100, pmamichinfo@yahoo.com

Homer, Mich. – The United States Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA/APHIS) has permanently revoked the commercial breeding license for dog breeder Allen Mast of Homer in Calhoun County, following an investigation that found multiple violations of the federal law designed to protect animals in wholesale animal breeding kennels, research facilities, and traveling wild animal exhibitions.

The USDA/APHIS Investigative and Enforcement Services division began an investigation in July of 2012 after Mast’s kennel was cited for repeated violations of the Animal Welfare Act, including citations for inadequate veterinary care. On March 26, 2012, inspectors found a dead poodle in a cage at the facility. As a result of the investigation, Mast’s USDA Class A breeding license (required for wholesale breeders who supply puppies to pet stores) was revoked on May 13, 2013.

A settlement agreement was reached between the USDA and Mast, and he was given 12 weeks to donate and/or transfer ownership and possession of any dogs on his premises. Details on the settlement can be found at http://www.aphis.usda.gov/foia/enforcement_actions/2013/(5)%20May%202013/AWA/Pre-Settlement%20Agreements/MI120044-AC%20Allen%20Mast%20NMSA%20signed_Redacted.pdf

Mast has been operating the wholesale dog breeding kennel since 2009 and has housed between 22 and 38 adult dogs including beagles, pugs, poodles, and Pomeranians, according to the USDA inspection reports available at www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_welfare/efoia/.

 

Photos from the USDA/APHIS 2012 inspections showed a dead poodle in a cage, excessive dog feces, wire-floored cages, excessively long nails on the dogs, and debris in the kennel area. Photos are available at http://www.meetup.com/puppymillawareness/photos/15752182/

“If families could see the conditions in many commercial kennels, they may not purchase the puppies in the pet stores that these kennels supply. Families may unknowingly contribute to cruelty by purchasing pet store puppies, and would not want their pets—essentially, their family members—raised like this.” said Pam Sordyl, founder of Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan, an advocacy group.

Puppy Mill Awareness of SE Michigan began investigating the Mast kennel in March of 2012 after online USDA/APHIS inspection reports revealed the discovery of a dead poodle at the facility. Local complaints were filed with the Homer Township Zoning Department and Calhoun County Animal Control for missing kennel permits and dog licenses, and Mast received four citations by USDA/APHIS for failure to provide a responsible adult at the premises to let in the inspectors.

 

“We were hoping the local authorities would be able to protect the animals in the Mast kennel, but we learned that a Calhoun County animal control officer was also unable to inspect the kennel after two visits.” said Sordyl. “These types of operators that ignore federal inspector recommendations and the Animal Welfare Act over and over need to be addressed with fines and prosecution.”

 

The USDA is not required to notify local law enforcement when direct or indirect violations of the Animal Welfare Act occur.

There is currently no state law that regulates dog breeding facilities like the Mast kennel, but Senator Steve Bieda (D-Warren) and Senator Rick Jones (R-Grand Ledge) have introduced the Puppy Protection Act (S.B. 117 and 118) to alleviate that loophole. The Puppy Protection Act would provide guidelines for housing, sanitary conditions, enclosure space, exercise, and veterinary care of dogs in all large-scale breeding kennels in Michigan, including those who sell puppies to pet stores and directly to the public. The legislation current awaits its first hearing in the Senate Agriculture Committee.

Learn more about Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan at www.meetup.com/detroit-puppy-mill-awareness/about/.


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Thursday, June 13, 2013

Group Petitions Missaukee County to stop Michigan's Largest Animal Hoarder



Michigan’s Largest Animal Hoarder
Allowed to have Animals

Michigan group petitions prosecutor
to file cruelty charges

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 13th, 2013

CONTACT: Pam Sordyl, (734) 718-7100, pmamichinfo@yahoo.com

Lake City, Mich. – On June 4, 2013 Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan launched a petition to stop John Jones “JRT John” from having animals and costing tax payers more money to regulate, investigate and seize neglected animals.  The petition targeting the Missaukee prosecutor has reached over 1,000 signatures.

Link to online petition:


On May 23, 2013, Missaukee County seized approximately 160 animals from John Jones, Michigan's largest hoarder and puppy mill. Just a few years earlier, Barry County seized 85 animals after Jones violated zoning laws.  

“There's a pattern of cruelty here, and since officials didn't include probation in the latest case, he could easily move to another county or state and start all over again” stated Pam Sordyl, Founder of Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan.  

The sheriff’s initial kennel inspection resulted in a multitude of violations to involving basic care standards, however the Missaukee County prosecutor only filed civil charges against Jones under Public Nuisance.
 

  • According to the inspection reports, Mr. Jones is accused of housing over 160 dogs, including Jack Russells, Shiba Inus and Border Collies, who were discovered by the Roscommon Animal Control Officer to have insufficient water, shelter, sanitary conditions, and protection from the elements. (THE MICHIGAN PENAL CODE (EXCERPT) Act 328 of 1931) 

  • In addition, Mr. Jones was performing his own removal of dew claws and tail docking on the puppies. Such actions are illegal in Michigan. These procedures are considered a surgery and can only be performed by a licensed veterinarian. (PUBLIC HEALTH CODE (EXCERPT) Act 368 of 1978)               

“Michiganians have no tolerance for animal neglect or cruelty and want those who commit such acts held accountable. The sheer number of animals involved in the Jones case is shocking.” Sordyl

Jones will be facing Chief Circuit Court Judge Honorable William M. Fagerman on Tuesday, June 25th for felony charges for assaulting an officer and resisting arrest during the seizure. Undersheriff William Yancer hopes to include probation terms that will prevent Jones from having animals in other counties or states.

Puppy Mill Awareness is assisting local animal advocates by providing an ordinance called the Humane Pet Acquisition Proposal that would ban the retail sale of animals and protect families from purchasing sick animals. 

Learn more about Puppy Mill Awareness 
http://www.meetup.com/detroit-puppy-mill-awareness/about/


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Friday, June 7, 2013

Krazie Kritterz Owner Arrested


 
Mounting complaints at Cheboygan store prompted
state investigation, doors close Saturday
 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 7th, 2013

CONTACT: Pam Sordyl, (734) 718-7100, pmamichinfo@yahoo.com

CHEBOYGAN, Mich. – Saturday, June 8th, 2013, the Krazie Kritterz pet store will be closing due to public pressure and pending charges related to pet store violations. The owner of the store, Joyce LaLonde, was arrested and booked into the county jail on
January 25th, 2013 for not providing a health certificate upon purchase. 

Krazie Kritterz opened in April 2012 and is located at
229 N Main St., Cheboygan Mi. 

According to the local Animal Control Officer, Deputy Swanson, officers visited the store approximately 15 times since the store opened. Complaints related to sick and underage animals, not providing veterinary care, unsanitary conditions, and administrating medications without a veterinary license, which is a felony in
Michigan. Approximately, seven complaints were turned over to the County Prosecutor. 

Sheriff Dale V. Clarmont issued a warrant and arrested LaLonde on
January 25, 2013 after she sold an animal without a 30-day health certificate. 

“Earlier that day, she was cited for not providing a valid health certificate and she turned around and sold another one on the same day” stated Swanson. 

The charges were dismissed with deferred prosecution. 

The Michigan Department of Agriculture was asked to assist the local animal control during store inspections. Dr. Robinson’s June 2012 report indicated they observed several things unsatisfactory regarding animal conditions. A letter was sent requiring improvement to the flooring in order to maintain surfaces beneath the cages capable of being disinfected. A copy of the Ferret Advisory was provided. Some comments were made regarding the parrot, psittacoses birds and psittacosis as it pertains to public health concerns and cleanliness of the birds. 

Other violations noted by Animal Control included, feces found in the carpet, a fish with an injured tail, birds with missing feathers, and ventilation issues. 

Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan also investigated the store.” We became concerned that the store was selling a wide variety of exotic and wild animals, such as hedgehogs and chipmunks, which are not common companion animals and require federal licensing”, stated Pam Sordyl, the founder of Puppy Mill Awareness. 

“I had to notify the store that the European Goldfinch needed his beak trimmed. It was overgrown and curved under. The store didn’t know they had to trim the bird’s beaks.” stated Erica Repp. 

“During two separate visits, I observed the birds in inadequate conditions. Their feathers were greasy and clumps were missing from the large Mcaws which is a sign of stress. None of the birds had toys, were unfriendly or not responsive.” Repp.

Puppy Mill Awareness is assisting local animal advocates by providing an ordinance called the Humane Pet Acquisition Proposal that would ban the retail sale of animals and protect families from purchasing sick animals. 

Learn more about Puppy Mill Awareness 
http://www.meetup.com/detroit-puppy-mill-awareness/about/


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Monday, May 13, 2013

Pet Lemon Law is introduced in Michigan



Puppy Mill Awareness Commends
Legislative Action to Protect Pet Buyers 

Pet Lemon Law is introduced in Michigan offering recourse for dog, cat and ferret buyers 


A "Pet Lemon Law" has been re-introduced in Michigan to offer consumer protections for purchasers of dogs, cats and ferrets. Under S.B. 348, people who purchase sick or diseased animals from pet shops, breeders or dealers would have specific recourse against the sellers.

Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan applauds Sen. Steve Bieda (D-Warren) for leading S.B. 348, which would offer options for the purchaser, including returning the animal for a full refund and replacement or recovery of veterinary expenses. The bill includes specific time frames for reporting illnesses, maximum amounts a buyer can recover, and provisions for congenital defects in the purchased animals.

The full text of S.B. 348 can be found here: http://legislature.mi.gov/doc.aspx?2013-SB-0348

"This will hold pet sellers accountable for burdening the public with veterinary costs and emotional stress of caring for a sick pet," said Pam Sordyl, founder of Puppy Mill Awareness. "We commend Senator Bieda for addressing this costly problem, and for protecting the additional victims of the pet trade: consumers."

Liz Frates, of Ann Arbor, told Puppy Mill Awareness that she purchased a 16-week-old Yorkshire Terrier from a Michigan breeder for $1,200 in cash. She was told that the puppy was healthy. The breeder’s full written pet guarantee against anything congenital or hereditary did not help Liz in court, after the puppy was diagnosed with grade 2 luxating patellas in both legs – a congenital defect requiring surgery totaling nearly $3,200. Liz had already spent $900 in veterinary costs addressing breathing and diarrhea problems that the puppy had endured since his purchase.

"Without laws in place irresponsible breeders have free reign to find loop holes and continue with their unethical practices.” said Frates. “Pet insurance will not cover hereditary, genetic or congenital defects and most people cannot afford the thousands of dollars in vet bills and surgeries to correct such health problems.”

In Michigan, consumers often rely on the Better Business Bureau to settle disputes with pet stores. Other times they end up in small claims court, which places a heavy burden on the purchaser to prove that the seller was aware of a pre-existing condition in the purchased animal.

Puppy Mill Awareness has been logging sick dog complaints in Michigan for four years. “Cases often go unreported to proper authorities. Buyers may complain to the pet store or breeder, only to have their calls unreturned,” said Sordyl. “We advocate for consumers by providing counseling and a checklist including agencies who may respond to complaints.” That checklist can be found here: http://files.meetup.com/1258100/SickPuppyChecklistv8.doc

Puppy Mill Awareness started a petition in support of Michigan's Pet Lemon Law on Change.org. By signing the petition, citizens can let their representatives know that they support the law, too. The petition can be found here: http://www.change.org/petitions/the-mi-state-senate-pass-lemon-law-to-protect-michigan-pet-buyers

Puppy Mill Awareness would like to thank Sen. Bieda and the bill co-sponsors for both protecting Michigan consumers and shining the spotlight on the puppy mill/pet store connection.

According to the nonprofit humane education group The Citizens Against Puppy Mills:
http://www.citizensagainstpuppymills.org/pics.php


  • Nearly 100% of all puppies in pet stores have parasites when they are purchased. 
  • 48% of puppies being sold in pet stores were ill or incubating an illness at the time of purchase, according to a recent California study. 
  • 500,000 puppies are born in puppy mills and sold in pet stores every year in the United States. 
  • Commercial breeders can make more than $300,000 selling puppies every year. 
  • Almost every puppy sold in a pet store has a mother who will spend her entire life in a tiny cage, never being petted, never being walked, never being treated like a dog. 
  • Female dogs are usually bred two times each year. At that rate, they usually burn out by the age of five, at which time they are put to death 
The Puppy Mill Awareness Meetup of Southeast Michigan is working to end the mass production of dogs in commercial kennels ("puppy mills"). Our mission is to educate the public about the cruel cycle of commercial dog breeding and the pet store link. Read more about our goals, success stories, activities and studies at http://www.meetup.com/puppymillawareness/about/

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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

2009-Present Terry Adams (Garage Salesman)

Aliases, sick and dying animals, alledgegly practicing veterinary care

BRIGHTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. – On June 5, 2011, Terry Adams was arraigned in Livingston County District Court on charges of unauthorized practice of a health profession and pet-shop violations. Prosecutors allege he was operating as a veterinarian without a license and sold or delivered dogs without the appropriate health certificate. He pleaded not guilty.

Assistant Prosecutor Anthony Ameche asked the judge to adjourn a preliminary hearing because a witness, who is named as the victim in the complaint, could not be located. Judge L. Suzanne Geddis dismissed the charges, however will allow the prosecutor to refile the felony complaint. 

Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan has been investigating the pet store located at a residence (pole barn) 4413 Kensington Road, Milford Michigan since 2009.  “We are most concerned that Terry Adams is part of the puppy mill pet trade, selling sick dogs and practicing veterinary medicine without a license“ said Pam Sordyl, Director of Puppy Mill Awareness. 

Some of the investigation findings include:

¨     Practice Veterinary Care without a license

¨     Selling sick puppies – 8 complaints.

¨     Lack of disease control  - parvo outbreaks.

¨     Using aliases

¨     Missing Interstate Health Certificates

¨     Missing 30-Day Health Certificates – Pet Store Laws Apply

¨     No business licenses (MDA and Department of Energy Labor and Economic Growth)

¨     No Tax ID for puppy selling

¨     No resale certificates provided to customers.  

Shoppers who call in response to Mr. Adams’ ads in local papers are told to bring “cash only” and that they can pick up a registered AKC puppy by appointment. The property is gated requiring authorization to proceed to the garage.  

“Once we entered the building I was astonished by the amount of puppies in cages!” said Dena Awdish, from West Bloomfield, Mich. who visited the garage. “I told my husband that these were ‘puppy mill’ pups and wanted to leave but he insisted on seeing the pugs and letting our daughter pick one.  There had to have been 30 - 40 different pups, and about 15 different breeds but no parents anywhere.  The pups were in wire cages and had no bedding whatsoever.”  

The advocacy group observed puppies housed in Mr. Adams’ garage including Maltepoos, Papillons Chihuahuas, Pomeranians, Cavelier Spaniels, Yorkie-poos and Shihtsu mixes.  Other customers reported Min Pins, Pugs, Doxins, Pug Mixes, Australian Sheppard Mix, Beagles, Poodles, Maltese. He also advertised Pekineges, Boston Terrier and French Bulldogs.
 

Mr. Adams told Puppy Mill Awareness that he worked with breeders in Indiana, Lansing, Grand Rapids, Howell, Fowlerville and Traverse City, however, there were no USDA licensed breeders in these cities at that the time. It is illegal for a breeder to sell to a pet store (wholesale) without a USDA license.    

“The puppies are not receiving Health Certificates by a certified vet , meaning they are more likely to become ill at these young ages. Without proper shelter and health care one sick dog likely means many others are falling ill.”  

¨     11+ complaints have been filed with the Livingston County Animal Control.

¨     7 customers have purchased sick dogs including two confirmed cases of parvo puppies.

¨     1 puppy died.

¨    2 individuals have taken him to small claims court. There may be more cases.

Terry Adams has been selling puppies illegally out of his pole barn via classified ads since 2006. In October 2010, the Brighton Planning office notified the household that their property is not zoned as a B-2 district which is required to operate a business. On February 18, 2011, the Planning Office sent a second notification. 

Several customers have reported Terry has offered further veterinary services including vaccinations and spay/neuter surgeries. He provides pricing quotes on a sheet of paper. Mr. Adams stated his brother in-law performs the surgeries in his mobile vet van in the driveway. Other times he stated he does the surgeries himself. He has also referred customers to John Hermann DVM who stops at the local Tractor and Supply. In October 2010, Puppy Mill Awareness asked him which veterinary he works with and he stated he doesn’t use a vet since he knows how to do everything. When asked if he had been trained as a vet tech, he said no.    

Terry Adams has also used the alias Ron Martin with customers. He may also use the name George and Jeff Adams. He has advertised in the Detroit News Classifieds under the home number 248-379-0041 and 248-230-6089. He  switched to the 6089 number for the 2011 online ads. Prices range from $375 - $700. Alledgedly, the quoted price change when customers arrive – they go up. One customer reported he switched the puppy she had left a deposit on and sold her a sick puppy, that later died.  

Some of the puppies come from an unlicensed breeder named Jacob Schwartz (11310 Roth, Grabill, Indiana 46741 (260)704-26470). Schwartz does not have a USDA license to sell wholesale to Terry Adam. He is also not registered with Indiana Board of Animal Health which is a misdemeanor. The Indiana Prosecutors and the USDA have been notified.  

“The pen had diarrhea and the pups were lethargic. He was trying to cover up the diarrhea in the cage with newspapers. He was wearing gloves and said pictures were not allowed.” said Jamie Bofek of Sterling Heights, Mich.

Follow this case on our Meetup Discussion Board. http://www.meetup.com/puppymillawareness/messages/boards/thread/9912865/#101012752



Monday, April 29, 2013

2013 Greenwood Pets Investigation

Chronic problems, complaints and cruelty charges

WARREN Mich - Greenwood Pets has a history of pet store violations going back to 2006 involving no food, unsatisfactory cleanliness, food storage not adequate, overcrowding of animal cages, insufficient number of employees to maintain husbandry, surfaces not disinfected and distressed birds loosing feathers. Fines were issued by the Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA), but the store continued to receive complaints involving the same violations. In 2008, the MDA ended their pet shop program and complaints were filed with Warren’s local animal control office.  

Puppy Mill Awareness of Southeast Michigan’s investigation tied Greenwood Pets to a large puppy broker from Kansas through interstate shipping records. Lambriar’s last inspection listed 773 puppies in inventory and was selling unhealthy puppies for over ten years per reports published by PetShopPuppies.org. Some of Lambriar’s breeders had serious violations to the Animal Welfare Act and are considered “puppy mills”. 

In 2011, Warren assigned a different animal control officer after Greenwood sold an underage pot-bellied pig to a Warren family where farm animals are illegal to own forcing the family to return their beloved new pet.  

In 2012, two search warrants were issued and the owner was charged with animal cruelty and abandonment. Officers were called to the store after a goat was found untreated with an urinary blockage. The owner is currently facing felony charges and awaiting trial. 

Customers have reported unsanitary conditions and sickly animals in the store for years including: dead rats, dirty ferret & bird cages, filthy snake aquariums full of dead skin with dried up water bowls, aquariums with brown algae on walls with no lights or filtration, a Cockatoo bird who was feather plucking until chest was bare, puppies covered rust colored dirt, fish with fungus on their heads, lethargic fish, a snake with small sores on its nose, turtles without perches, rat feces on the floor. 

A trial date is set for May 21, 2013 at the 16th Judicial Circuit Court in Mt. Clemens Michigan.
 
Follow this open investigation on the Puppy Mill Awareness of SE Michigan discussion board. http://www.meetup.com/puppymillawareness/messages/boards/thread/10050964


2012 Pet Station Investigation

Ramzi Dakhlallah was charged with 37 counts of animal cruelty. 


DEARBORN HEIGHTS, Mich April 11, 2012 - A Dearborn Heights man and his store, Pet Station LLC, are accused of subjecting more than 20 dogs, 70 birds and numerous other animals such as hamsters and snakes to poor care that included depriving them of food and water. 

He and Pet Station are charged with one count of abandon and/or cruelty to 10 or more animals, a 4-year felony. 

He and the store also face misdemeanor charges: one count of false pretenses between $200 to $1,000 for selling a sick animal; one count of nonsufficient funds of $100 or more but less than $500 for writing a bad check on the pet store's account; 20 counts of violations related to the pet shop and care of animals; one count of rules violation for failing to maintain proper records on the animals; and 13 counts of violation of the Animal Industry Act for not following the state Department of Agriculture rules for the importation of dogs in to the state. Those charges have penalties varying from 30 days to one year in jail.

About 10 people complained to authorities about the miserable conditions in the pet store, prosecutor's office spokeswoman Maria Miller said. 

DEARBORN HEIGHTS, Mich. October, 5 2012 - Ramzi Dakhlallah was charged in April with 37 counts of animal cruelty following a lengthy investigation of the owner of the Pet Station. The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office alleged that he abused or neglected more than 100 animals during his ownership of the shop, located on Telegraph Road near Van Born. 

Judge Thomas E. Jackson on Wednesday placed Dakhlallah on probation for five years, and ordered that he stay out of the pet shop business.
 
For more information about this case, go to the Puppy Mill Awareness of SE Michigan Message Board. http://www.meetup.com/puppymillawareness/messages/boards/thread/22280782/0#74515192