Mother’s Day 2012 sees the launch of my “Where’s Mum?” anti-puppy farming campaign, introduced on Channel 5’s Live with Gabby yesterday with The Only Way is Essex celeb mother and daughter Debbie and Lydia (below).
“Where’s Mum?” is a brand new campaign designed with massive celebrity support to help British public choose a healthy happy puppy.
These days it’s never been easier to get your hands on a new puppy. But how can you be sure that this tiny ball of fluff will grow into a happy and healthy dog and live to a ripe old age of sometimes sixteen years old?
Well a combination of cute and convenience culture means prospective dog owners are finding themselves helplessly lured into pictures of little balls of fluff that they can take home, feed, play with, and look after for the rest of the dog’s happy and healthy lives.
Sadly the reality is far from either cute or fluffy with well meaning dog lovers ending up with a depressed, sick, diseased puppy that doesn’t resemble its picture or breed it’s advertised as.
These puppies which commonly die young or costing the new owner thousands of pounds to fix are typically born on puppy farms – commercial breeders that put profit before welfare mass producing sick pups to sell from outlets such as pet shops, websites, free newspaper adverts, even motorway service stations and dodgy car parks.
(Left to right) Lydia, me with rescue pup Lila, and Debbie
By inviting celebrities to take part in “Where’s Mum?” it’s hoped that the message about how to get a dog responsibly and ethically will get across to the exact celebrity influenced public that continue to buy diseased farmed pups without knowing.
Puppies depend heavily on their mums in the early weeks of life, not just for milk but also for developing their socialisation skills which help set them up for life. I want everyone buying a puppy to ask one simple question: “Where’s Mum?”
If the breeder or puppy’s seller can’t or won’t show you the puppy with its mother, then you should suspect the puppy was born on a puppy farm and go elsewhere such as a responsible breeder or rescue shelter.
Only buy a puppy if:
You can see puppy interacting with mum
It’s a breeder recommended by the Kennel Club (preferably Assured Breeder)
It’s a rescue centre that’s a registered charity
Be suspicious of a farmed pup if:
Mum isn’t there (she’s most likely miles away on cruel puppy farm)
You’re told mum’s at the vet, been run over, sick, basically anywhere else
Price is either very cheap (£100-£350) or very expensive (£2000-£7000)
Pup is being sold in a pet shop or garden centre
Pup is sold from website, Friday Ad, motorway service station, pub
You’re offered free delivery
The “Where’s Mum?” campaign will run all summer with various celebrities and their mums and dogs raising awareness until Pup Aid puppy farming awareness day in London on Saturday September 8th. For more details click here.