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Adopt! Please don’t support Puppy Mills!

Puppy mills are “factory style” dog-breeding facilities that put profit above the welfare of dogs. Most dogs raised in puppy mills are housed in shockingly poor conditions with improper medical care, and the parents of the puppies are kept in cages to be bred over and over for years, without human companionship and with little hope of ever joining a family.

And after they’re no longer profitable, breeding dogs are simply discarded – either killed, abandoned or sold at auction. Puppy mill puppies are sold to unsuspecting consumers in pet stores, over the Internet and classified ads.

Find a New Furry Friend!

Bring the whole family to Pet Fest and find a new forever friend from the pets for adoption! At Pet Fest you can visit with pet rescue organizations and local shelters from around Western Montana.

Support their fund-raising efforts by donating to your favorite cause. You’ll find education on behavior issues, choosing the right pet and more.

Consider the Source When Getting a Puppy!

If you’re ready to get a dog, congratulations! You’ll add a loving member to your family and enrich your life. The best place to find a dog or puppy is your local animal shelter or breed rescue group. They have plenty of purebreds, mixed-breeds, big dogs and little dogs — you’re sure to find a great companion. And we will have PLENTY to choose from at Pet Fest!

When you adopt from a shelter or rescue group, you’ll give a dog a second chance at finding a home and you will not add to the nation’s pet overpopulation problem. The reality is that an estimated 3.7 million unwanted pets must be euthanized at animal shelters every year — many because they could not find families to adopt them.

If you don’t find your ideal companion at your local shelter or breed rescue group, you may choose to purchase a puppy instead of adopting one. In this case, it is important to be certain you are buying from a responsible breeder that breeds and sells only healthy well-socialized puppies.

Responsible breeders typically do not sell their puppies to pet stores. Most responsible breeders want to meet and screen prospective owners to ensure that their puppies are going to good homes. Sadly, most pet store puppies come from puppy mills where dogs are not bred for good health and temperament and where they are often raised in inhumane conditions.

Even if you are looking for a specific breed, please check out Pet Fest. Shelters and rescues have many purebred animals that have been abandoned or rescued from puppy mills. Puppy mills are a plague! The dogs are often small breeds like Yorkshire terriers, poodles, Chihuahuas, or “designer” mixes. Sadly, the mills abuse larger dogs, too. In 2012, the Humane Society of the United States joined the Lewis and Clark Humane Society, the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, and the Jefferson County Attorney to rescue more than 160 Malamutes from a Montana puppy mill. All of these dogs were legally released for adoption and moved to shelters and rescues across the country for adoption.

The HSUS encourages people to consider adopting from a shelter or rescue group first, or buying from a responsible breeder, instead of purchasing a puppy from a pet store or online seller, where the dogs may come from puppy mills.