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You would like to get a new pet, it is an important responsibility, but the promise of its provenance is just as important. There are several places where you can get a new pet: buy from a pet store, an individual, a certified breeder or not; adopt from an individual or a shelter (NPO). Some of these places are problematic because they have a direct or indirect impact on animal welfare. Let’s not forget that it is never advisable to buy an animal in an impulsive or pitiful way.

Note that in Canada, but especially in Quebec, thousands of dogs and cats are confined in small cages under horrible conditions for breeding purposes, where their offspring are sold in pet stores or online. It is an industry where these animals are reproductive instruments in “factories” [i] (Puppymills). The abandonment of nearly 50,000 animals per year is happening only in the Montreal area.

Quebec’s animal welfare legislation is unfortunately not severe enough. To end, the protest movement must come from consumers. These can reduce demand by ceasing to support this type of breeding either by taking refuge or buying from a conscientious breeder.



Websites, Newspaper Ads
Beware, there is no way to know if your “merchant” is buying from a Puppymills or not. Some websites classified ads in newspapers, and online are all ways that puppymills use to sell their animals to customers. Puppymills’s tenants are smart, spreading misleading images of well-groomed animals comfortably lying in the living room with children. When you buy a new animal in these establishments, you create a space for the arrival of another animal from a Puppymills. The only way to stop these mass reproduction operations is to avoid buying an animal from an animal shop or online.

Beware, an individual who finds himself in spite of himself with a pregnant female because he adopted it (or she arrived at his door) in this state and that he intends to place his little ones as well as to make it sterilize, is a reliable source. Doubtful individuals are those who do not want to have their animals sterilized or protected from common diseases and are more likely to “let nature do things” or not realize the costs of maintaining a home animal. Sooner or later, nature and urban areas will become crowded with homeless and homeless animals thanks to these “nature lovers”. So it’s not recommended to encourage them.



Responsible breeders

There are many quality breeders in Quebec. Whether it is a family breeding or show dogs, these breeders have a transparency and openness that we do not find in the Puppymills. Some are registered with the Canadian Kennel Club (CKC) or the Canadian Feline Association (CFA) and others in the family have a reputation and references to give you. Anyway, it’s important to do your research. What to remember from these breeders:

  • they allow you to go to the house where your puppy
    or kitten was born and raised;
  • they will not breed more than one or two breeds at a time;
  • they will have a small number of animals and they will require
    that all the animals that are sold must be sterilized;
  • they will carry out an elaborate screening
    of potential buyers of their animals;
  • they view their farm animals as pets or family members, not as products;
  • their animals live in a family environment, not in cages, sheds or pens.

To try it is to adopt it!  

Adoption in a shelter or an animal rescue group [iii] are other reliable resources. This last option allows you, among other things, to select a “retired” adult animal, which is now between the hands of a rescue group. These not-for-profit organizations (NPO’s) are committed to the welfare of animals and they are not interested in making a profit. By adopting your companion from one of these shelters, you make sure you do not support Puppymills and help reduce animal overpopulation. A neglected and abandoned animal to whom you give a second chance will reward you to infinity and bring you immense joy. He will show you unconditional love.


The advantages of adopting an animal in an NPO:

  • get expert advice on the personality of the animal that best suits your lifestyle;
  • have a clear understanding of the animal’s character, behaviour, needs, strengths and weaknesses;
  • benefit from an animal with a basic education;
  • acquire a vaccinated, sterilized and dewormed animal;
  • offer a second chance to an animal;
  • the lack of Puppymills funding;
  • the assurance of adopting a healthy animal;
  • become an adoption ambassador;


By buying your pet in a pet shop, the chances of falling on a candidate from Puppymills are high. The ideal is to inform and research in a thoughtful and non-impulsive way. It is said that more than half of people go on the Internet to get a pet. Education on the best methods of buying pets must be done on this same platform.

 © Martine Lavallée B.A.A. and Animal Health Technician


Reference and photo credits:

Humane Society of South Mississippi – Facebook

[iii] Secours Boxer Québec :

SOS Lévrier secours :
Secours Golden Retriever :
Liste de refuges pour chats :
Réseau secours animal :
Humanimo :






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