Pet store dogs

I am in the market for a dog, now that I am living in a place that allows them, and I know that pet stores are not the place to get dogs because of puppy mills, but out of curiosity I went into a large pet store and inquired about the dogs.

When asked where the dogs come from the salesman explained how this particular chain gets heir puppies from local breeders, they do spot checks of the breeders and if a breeder ever fails an inspection they are blacklisted permanently.

I would have to see what constitutes a pass before I would get a dog from them, but he had also mentioned that the particular dog I was interested in was going to be 12 weeks soon and the price would drop.

Ok I understand that, the people buying from pet stores want puppies and so the older the dog, the cheaper the price.

But what happens to the dogs that they can’t sell? Do they go to the SPCA, back to the breeder, or what?
And what is the cutoff age for puppies in pet stores?

If they don’t sell they’ll probably end up in a breed rescue program or at a shelter. Do everybody a big favor and go to the breed rescue group first. Don’t give in to the temptation to “save” the puppy, you’re just encouraging the whole system to continue. Get a rescue dog who really needs you, it will be cheaper in the long run and the good karma is always useful.

Pet store dogs tend to be sick–I used to work in a pet store and the disgusting aspects of cleaning up after parvo puppies is only exceeded by the heartbreak of knowing you aren’t going to be able to save most of them. NO breeder of any repute at ALL will sell to a pet store. It’s puppy mill or irresponsible hobby breeders all the way and you’re paying show quality pup prices for truly inferior specimens. Pups in stores are spending their prime socialization time in a glass box being poked at by a random assortment of strangers–this will make an aggressive pup downright evil and send a timid dog into semi-catatonia.

If you absolutely MUST have a puppy rather than a rescued older dog, go directly to a breeder who has both parents on site and who welcomes drop in visits. Be ready to answer questions about your experience with dogs in general and the specific breed in particular–a good breeder takes about as much time approving new owners as adoption agencies take sussing out prospective parents, and for much the same reason.

Again, I can’t emphasize too strongly that you really ought to check out local breed rescues and the shelters. Rescue dogs can be initially difficult but they repay the effort a thousandfold with their love and loyalty–they know they have it good and how much worse it can be.

I have been looking at the local resuce shelters. I find out tomorrow if I get the cutest maletese cross that is about a year old.

Have no fear I am not getting a dog from the pet store, I am just curious as to what happens to them.


I work for a vet who has worked with pet stores (pet stores are required to have a vet sign off on pups before selling them). Mostly, the pups that don’t sell are reduced in price and most of the time, some one buys them. Others are “adopted” out without a warranty in many cases. I’ve never known any to go to the shelter or SPCA. If the pup cannot be sold because of a defect- unless one of the sucker vets (in a good way) takes pity and fixes it up and adopts it out- they go back to the breeder where who knows whats happens to them.

I’m very glad you are not getting a dog from a pet store- they are horrible places. And I’ve heard that line about “local breeders” many, many times. It’s a lie, first of all- and I agree that no responsible breeder with quality dogs would consider selling to a pet store.

It would depend on if the pet store had actually bought the puppies (such as wholesale stock) or if they were just displaying them for the breeder in exchange for a cut of the sales price (as in consignment). I can’t answer as to what would happen to them if they were owned by the pet store, but if they still belonged to the breeder then any number of scenarios could play out - the breeder tries to sell them without the pet store’s help, the breeder keeps them to use as breeding when they are old enough, the breeder keeps them as a pet, the breeder abandons them to a shelter, or the breeder has them euthanized.

Upon preview I was going to add that the pet store’s spiel was likely a fabrication, anyway, but I see Smokinjbc is already on top of things. Including what happens if they are owned by the store.

My rescue group experience wasn’t all that good. After the interview (in which they brought a dog to see how the kids and family reacted to one) and application process, we were assigned a “match”. …Ziggy the bad biting dog- he bit eight people in the eight days he was here!

First, they told me he was just nervous and later that he was being protective of us. Then they told me they could take him back but couldn’t refund our money. They offered to send him to a dog therapist (which we agreed to do) but then called to say that well, he was a biter but they would have him put down if I didn’t take him back because they can’t place biters and he was my dog.

I simply don’t believe that he started biting the day he moved in here.

I think in their zeal to place dogs, the may overlook some problems.