Puppies 'Viewed as Livestock' in Amish Community, Says Rescue Advocate

The difference, he says, is that "animal welfare is you treat the dog how you want to be treated. And animal rights activists, they just have a different mindset, a mentality, that, I've never really figured it out. "

Ezekiel showed us the "public" face of his business. The heated shed where buyers are invited to pick out the puppies they want.

"The puppy we sell here is a healthier puppy than if I had Lassie running around, feed her puppies over here," he said. "The way that we raise them is much healthier than the other way."

Then we asked him to show us the back room, where the public is not allowed. He gave us an exclusive look inside his facility where he breeds hundreds of dogs in cage after cage.

He considers the facility to be top of the line. There is no chicken wire, the dogs stand on plastic grating and they have access to solid floors, and he showed us his "state-of-the-art" waste disposal system.

"This system is commercially available, they use it in swine and veal and things like that," he said.

Inside Access: 'They Love Being Here'

The technology, he says, allows Ezekiel and his wife to take care of all 200 dogs by themselves.

"The way we have the building set up, the modern way, if we have to go back, if new legislation goes into effect, we will not be able to care for this many dogs because it's just going to be so much more labor intensive," he said.

Pending legislation would require dogs to have solid flooring and access to the outside to exercise. Ezekiel says that is unnecessary.

"What she's doing is she's running," he explained, showing us a dog on an exercise wheel in an an enclosed space. "She's getting her exercise, you know instead of letting them run around ... we put them in there, they use more muscles that they wouldn't use running around."

"In the state of Pennsylvania, the confinement laws that we have, that if the dog goes off our property, we can be arrested for it," he said.

He added that it would be "more inhumane" to have the dogs "out in the mud, in the cold, the rain, [the] wind."

Ezekiel says his dogs are healthy and happy, and says he doesn't operate a "puppy factory."

"If this would be a puppy factory, that Daschund you see right there, she wouldn't be doing what she was doing. She's wanting me to hold her, if she would be a puppy mill she would cowering in the back of that box, you can see, a lot of our dogs, they love being in here."

Back at Mainline Rescue, the dogs rescued last night are being assessed by a veterinary technician. Smith says he's rescued about 2,000 dogs from the Amish and almost all of them have been placed in permanent homes.

"I would encourage people adopt," he said. "Eight million dogs are euthanized; 8 million pets are euthanized every year in this country and yet they breed 8 million dogs."

Much of that breeding happens in Lancaster County, home to one of the most secretive people -- and industries -- in the nation.

CLICK HERE for more information about Main Line Animal Rescue.

-- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 7187712. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 7187712. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 7187712. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 7187712. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 7187712. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 7187712. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 7187712.
Page
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...