Prop. B only applies to dogs sold commercially as pets
Critics get it wrong when they falsely characterize Proposition B ("Local breeders say puppy mill ballot issue could hurt reputable breeders," Sept. 24).
In fact, if they took the time to read the measure for themselves, they would be likely to join us in our effort to provide more humane treatment of dogs at large-scale puppy mills. The measure only covers dogs sold commercially as pets -- no other species of animal. It includes a specific exemption for hunting dogs and doesn't apply to small breeders who have 10 or fewer breeding dogs. It could not be more clear that this measure has no impact on sportsmen or agriculture.
At puppy mills in Missouri, dogs are crammed into small and filthy cages, denied veterinary care, exposed to extremes of heat and cold, and given no exercise or human affection. These puppy mills are cruel and the way these dogs are treated is wrong. Prop B will stop puppy mill abuses by establishing common sense standards for the proper care of dogs.
Commercial dog breeder Cathy Blacklock of Lucky Dog Ranch thinks giving a Chihuahua 12 square feet of floor space is "ridiculous." But that's a 3-foot by 4-foot cage, smaller than a standard 3-foot by 5-foot American flag. And the dogs will live in those cages for their entire lives.
Prop B would apply to licensed and unlicensed puppy mills alike, giving law enforcement the tools they need to fight all abusive puppy mills. The measure has been endorsed by veterinarians and vet clinics, responsible breeders, faith leaders, business owners and humane societies.
All dogs deserve basic humane treatment. Readers can learn more by visiting www.YESonPropB.com.
Campaign Manager, Missourians for the Protection of Dogs / YES! on Prop B, and
Missouri State Director, Humane Society of the United States