Perhaps you’ve seen people picketing your local pet store because they were selling puppies. Don’t these people have anything better to do with their lives? Actually, no they don't. What they are doing is calling attention to not how the puppies in a pet store or treated, but where pet stores buy their puppies from – puppy mills. Puppy mills are not only cruel and unsanitary, but the puppies that come from there are often sickly, have ingrained behavioral problems and are sometimes sold with false papers.
If you want a Shih Tzu or a Shih Tzu mix, then you are best off getting your puppy not from a pet store or an Internet site that sells puppies with no questions asked (except your method of payment), but from reputable Shih Tzu breeders or an animal rescue shelter. The puppies and their parents from Shih Tzu breeders are kept in ethical conditions an receive great veterinary care, often get to live inside of a house and come with health guarantees. These are some of the many advantages of buying from Shih Tzu breeders or adopting from a Shih Tzu rescue.
Although animal rights activists and politicians like Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell (D) work hard to stop puppy mills, they can’t get them shut down if the puppy mill owners keep getting paid. Those payments come from puppies bought in pet store or Internet sites that only ask you where to ship the puppy and what your credit card number is.
The big advantage to getting your puppy from a reputable Shih Tzu breeder is that you can see the parents of the Shih Tzu puppies. You can also meet the first humans your puppy will be in contact with and help shape their attitude towards life. You can also get to tour the kennel or home of a Shih Tzu breeder to see if the dogs are happy, healthy and treated humanely. Not only is humane treatment of dogs the right thing to do, it also makes for a healthier, better mentally adjusted dog.
Always buy a Shih Tzu puppy from a reputable Shih Tzu breeder. Think about how a puppy lives in a pet store. They just sit in a cage all day and all night until they are sold. Every day they are fed, watered and their cage cleaned. The pet store employees usually have so much work to do that they cannot give the puppies the individual attention they need at this critical time. A puppy learns best from eight to fourteen weeks of age. When they miss this window, they will have a hard time learning to be a good pet.
Nobody wins when a puppy is bought from a pet store. The buyer doesn’t win, because they have a sickly and maladjusted puppy. The puppy’s parents sure don’t win, being forced to live in overcrowded wire cages until they are shot for being too old to breed. But the biggest loser is the puppy. That someone will most likely buy Shih Tzu puppy in the window on impulse bereft of any Shih Tzu information can cause the puppy to soon be abandoned. A Shih Tzu breeder makes sure you and the puppy are well matched for life.
The best way to stop puppy mills are to only buy puppies from reputable Shih Tzu breeders or adopt from shelters. One day no one will ever have to write about the existence of puppy mills in any further Shih Tzu information articles.