Investigation reveals dozens of sick, dying puppies at New York pet store

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A Humane Society secret investigation has found several sick and dying puppies at a well-known Manhattan pet store, some of which have even been sold to customers.

Much of the cruel treatment of animals at the Lexington Avenue American Kennel, open since 1954 and attracting customers with cute puppies to shop windows, has been captured on hidden cameras placed by the Humane Society of the United States.

The investigation found that of the approximately 60 puppies in the store, at one point, 12 to 20 of them were sick and were stored in the designated sick room and in a cold basement and hidden from the public, according to the Humane Society. According to the Human Society, at least one puppy was found dead in the store after being left alone for almost 24 hours between Thanksgiving Day and Friday morning.

All results were turned over to the New York Department of Consumer and Worker Protection. The agency, formerly known as the Department of Consumer Affairs, worked on a case based on an earlier Humane Society investigation that resulted in a record fine of $ 4 million against the Chelsea Kennel Club in 2020.

The investigator spent six weeks undercover in the store from October to early December of this year, documenting dozens of extremely sick dogs and at least one puppy that was not eating on its own – the same puppy being the one who died afterward. Thanksgiving.

According to the report, the investigator repeatedly asked management to take the visibly sick toy goldendoodle puppy to the vet, but he refused to do so. The dog, who refused to eat, was reportedly force-fed.

“Our secret investigations have repeatedly proven that pet stores like American Kennels get their dogs from puppy mills and are not a place for fragile young puppies,” said John Goodwin, senior director of the Stop Puppy Mills campaign at the Humane Society. “These animals can’t get the proper care they need in a retail store that has 50 or 60 puppies at a time, leaves them alone for long periods of time, and doesn’t take them for emergency care when they are are seriously ill. “

Some of the dogs were sick and suffered for weeks from symptoms suggesting infections, pneumonia, abscesses, diarrhea, parasites, etc., according to the Humane Society, and treated in the store with ad hoc remedies that didn’t. were not prescribed individually.

Many sick room cages were also smeared with so much excess excrement that dogs couldn’t stay inside. When the store’s sick rooms were full, some sick puppies were moved to the sales area and knowingly sold to unsuspecting families.

Some families who bought sick puppies then took them back to the store, where they were put back into sick rooms instead of being taken to a vet for medical treatment.

The Humane Society also said the store purchased puppies from at least three brokers who hold a Dealer B license from the United States Department of Agriculture, in violation of the Pet Stores Act. New York City. Store staff are reportedly refusing to share information about puppy breeders when customers ask them to, which is also a violation of pet store law.

The New York state legislature has twice reviewed a law, the Puppy Mill Pipeline Act, to end the sale of puppies in pet stores statewide. If it is passed by the State Senate this year, and the next will be considered by the legislature.

Anyone who has purchased a sick puppy from American Kennels or any other store in New York City is urged to contact the New York State Attorney General’s Office. Buyers can also report a sick puppy to the Humane Society of the United States and local law enforcement agencies.

“How often do we see sick, ailing and dying puppies in these stores?” said Goodwin. “New York must join the five other states where laws have been passed to end the sale of puppies in pet stores.


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