Adding a new member to your family is a big decision! When you’ve finally made that choice, the possibilities of where to find your new canine companion can seem endless. You can find dogs at rescues or shelters (your best options), pet stores, breeders and even online. But, it’s critical that you understand the difference between these options.
Perhaps one of the most dangerous of all of these is the backyard breeder.
What is a Backyard Breeder?
Backyard breeders are not reputable breeders. Instead, these are individuals who breed directly out of their home or a small commercial operation. A backyard breeder can have a number of reasons for starting their illegitimate business. Although their intentions may not always be harmful, backyard breeding is responsible for a large portion of the pet overpopulation crisis. In fact, every year 6 to 8 million animals enter animal shelters nationwide. With numbers that high, it’s not only difficult for rescues and shelters to protect each dog and help them find the home they deserve, but it becomes nearly impossible. With over three million animals euthanized each year in America’s shelters, it can be argued that backyard breeders are a major contributor toward this alarming death toll.
Why Backyard Breeding is Dangerous?
Backyard breeding is dangerous for many reasons. An actual breeder has extensive experience and knowledge of the pets they are working with. A backyard breeder on the other hand, may know very little or nothing at all about the dogs they are breeding. This can mean the dog you adopt could have health problems the breeder knew nothing about. There is much more that goes into breeding than simply producing a liter.
Beyond the breeding health concerns and lack of screening, there are also safety concerns. Not all backyard breeders are the same. While dogs from a backyard breeder don’t always live in poor conditions, there is no guarantee that the animal has been well cared for. Conditions may not be as bad as a puppy mill, but some backyard breeders barely provide adequate food and shelter.
The problem stops with you!
Instead of finding your new pet at a breeder, adopt from a rescue or shelter.