To the editor,
I was dismayed that the public voters and readership of The Coast awarded Pets Unlimited the Best Pet Supply Store ("Best of Halifax," November 2). I was further alarmed by the text awarding Pets Unlimited this vote by promoting breeding of exotic pets by the public: "If your chinchilla needs a mate...." The Coast may not be aware that SPCA sees many small animals turned into the shelter when the owner of a breeding pair is overwhelmed and ill-equipped to handle the inevitable natural progression in owning unaltered pets.
As a proud member of Maritime Animal Rescue, I am also a supporter of the SPCA, the Animal Rescue Coalition and various other shelters and rescues and a member of the Dog Legislation Council of Canada and the Canadian Kennel Club. I implore The Coast to do an in-depth expose of the practices of Pets Unlimited and similar pet stores. Such stores have unlimited resources to obtain puppy mill dogs that are brokered to their stores.
The public needs education so that Pets Unlimited will not profit from the impulse buyer who is not aware that the dog they are about to purchase may well have both physical and behavioural issues. The Canadian Kennel Club does not allow its breeders to sell puppies to these types of brokerage stores. Prospective buyers are carefully screened by ethical breeders, as well as by shelters and rescues. Breeders, shelters and rescues contract to take any dog back if a family emergency precludes that the dog be rehomed. It is not the almighty dollar that speaks volumes to those that truly care for the welfare of animals but rather the suitability of the home environment. Pets Unlimited does not care who you are or what your intentions are when purchasing a puppy.
By Janet Chernin