My husband and I were looking to obtain a Cairn terrier in October 2002. Yes, we had read all of the warnings on the internet against pet stores and puppy mills. I honestly thought, however, that it was just the private breeders getting upset because pet stores cut into their business.
We found a cute Cairn at the local Petland. Once they let us pet him in their "private petting room", we were attached!
I was a little concerned over the appearance of the puppy because I had done a lot of research on this particular breed and knew that they were usually a lot hairier, and maybe even had a larger frame. I asked the store's employees about this and they said that he was still a puppy,and that he would start growing hair "later".
We went back several times to look at him and pet him. Each time the store's employees would talk to the puppy and tell him things like "They don't really like you or they would buy you today," or "Poor thing, you thought you were going to get adopted today."
Finally, we forked over the money to get him (which was twice the amount a private breeder would normally charge). I was hoping that since he was "AKC registered", he really was what they said he was!
We named our little puppy Deacon, and he instantly made his way into our hearts and lives. But as he grew, we came to realize that he was not "pure bred." Of course we loved him a lot and thought he was the cutest thing in the world, but we were upset over paying so much money for a pure bred dog. I got so tired of people asking "What kind of dog is that, a long haired chihuahua?"
We even had a groomer offer to help us get our money back. She said that she had groomed a schnauzer from Petland before that wasn't purebred, and she had helped the owners get a refund.
Although I knew the truth deep down, I kept own thinking that maybe he was a "slow grower." We decided to give him some more time to "evolve." My husband and I agreed to wait until he was a year old and if he still didn't look right we would pursue the issue.
Sadly, our little Deacon died 1 month short of his 1st birthday in a tragic accident. We have missed him so much and his abscence has left a great void in our lives. We didn't have the heart to pursue anything after he died (Although we had plenty of pictures of him for proof). We loved him for who he was, not for what he was supposed to be.
However, from our 1 and only experience with Petland, I have become so outraged with not only Petland, but all stores that sell dogs from puppy mills. I didn't know how I could help in the fight against them, but when I came across this website, I knew I had to tell my story.
If you are considering purchasing a pure bred dog, please, plase, please purchase it from a loving, private breeder!!! Do not be fooled by the lies of those working in pet stores! It does not matter if the dog is AKC registered. It is no gaurantee that the dog is what he is supposed to be!
There are plenty mixed breed dogs in need of a loving home at local animal shelters without having to pay hundreds of dollars for one at a pet store!!!!!!!!!