There are various ways to get a pet dog. Some of the most common of these include:
- Going to a breeder.
- Getting one from an acquaintance, friend, or neighbor
- Visiting a pet store.
- Adopting one from a shelter.
There are other ways to get pet dogs, but these are the most common. Among these, one option that is seemingly racking up a bad reputation is the pet store. These pet stores came into existence after the increase in popularity of mega stores and mall puppies.
You will usually find a mall that had a pet store available. These stores feature aisles of cages that include various pets, including dogs. Although they remain popular today, many people have bad experiences with most pet stores.
The Issues with Pet Stores
There are many issues with pet stores, and if you listen to stories from various dog owners, you will be surprised at how bad it can get. Some people get puppies that are sick or dying, others get puppies with behavioral problems, and some people just get scammed.
A significant issue with pet store puppies is that they usually never conform to the breed standard. As they grow older, you begin to notice a minimal resemblance to the breed standard of what you wanted. Some of the issues created by pet stores are still being corrected by responsible dog breeders.
Another significant issue is the exploitation of dogs to produce puppies for pet stores. This exploitation is necessary to meet the business model of pet stores. A model that involves having a dog produce two litters per year in what is known as a “puppy mill.” These dogs are kept for about six years, after which they are disposed of.
In terms of feeding, the dogs only get enough food for them to make the litters. Housing was another area where these dogs are lacking. These establishments ensure they incur the lowest possible expenses to maximize profits.
Benefits of Buying a Puppy from a Pet Store
Despite the significant issues with pet stores, there are still several reasons why many people still queue up to get puppies from these stores. Some of the benefits of buying from a pet store include:
- You don’t need to search for a breeder for the breed you want.
- No need for extensive research on dog breeds.
- Unlike with breeders, rescue organizations, and shelters, there is no need to complete a questionnaire.
- You avoid the extensive evaluation of your abilities and home inspections.
- An excellent option for getting last-minute gifts.
- No journey to the home of a breeder.
- No possibility of repeating the process of searching for another breeder in case the first doesn’t work out.
- Avoid exchange of texts, phone calls, and emails with the breeder.
There are lots of other benefits of pet stores that make them attractive to the average individual. Most of the benefits of these stores all point towards convenience. Despite the convenience pet stores offer, there are also disadvantages you need to know.
Disadvantages of Pet Store Dogs
No Proper Information on the History
One of the most common line you will hear in a pet store is, “the dog comes from a reputable breeder.” This is an invalid statement since most reputable breeders never release their puppies to pet stores.
Keeping this in mind, where then do they get their puppies? Most pet stores get their puppies from commercial breeding facilities or puppy mills. Although these are not the same, there are similarities in how they operate.
To avoid promoting the activities of these facilities, you will find activists actively trying to get people to avoid patronizing pet stores. Getting a dog from a reputable breeder is the best option if you need a healthy dog with proper socialization and training.
They are Expensive
When considering only the convenience, many individuals fail to look at the price of a pet store dog or puppy. These dogs cost more than the same dog when you buy it from a breeder. This is due to the lengthy supply chain.
The operation of the kennel or breeding facility requires funds, there is a cut for the broker or middleman, transportation of the puppies costs money, and the store needs to make its profits. When you add up these expenses, it reflects on the cost of each dog.
These are the basic costs of the operation. Other additional expenses include the cost of vet care, employee salaries, and money spent on dog food. To make these high costs more acceptable, a pet store will offer you various add-ons such as:
- Weekly veterinary checks
- Dogs with up-to-date shots
- A guarantee
- Assurance of high-quality feeding
- Payment plan for those who can afford it
When you decide to get a dog, there are some questions you should ask at the pet store. These questions are as follows:
- Can I see the parents?
- Was the puppy adequately socialized?
- The training the dog received
- The health care history of the dog and parents
Although these are essential questions that need answers, you may never get them at a pet store. This is why many people still love to go to a breeder. For this, there is the option of visiting a large breeding establishment or a small breeder.
For dog breeders, their main focus is to develop the dog breed further. They assess the strengths and weaknesses of each dog before they decide to breed. Doing this will ensure that the strengths of the other overcome the shortcomings of one.
These breeders also know how important the environment is to the growth of healthy puppies. They offer the best care to both the dame and sire, and ensure the dogs go through proper socialization.