December 20, 2012 | Vol. 116 -- No. 35

Report: Reasons to howl about buying dogs online

SEATTLE – On a single day on the Internet, more than 700,000 dogs are for sale.

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If you buy a puppy online, is it from a reputable breeder or a puppy mill? The International Fund for Animal Welfare found 62 percent of the online ads it examined on a single day were “likely puppy mills.”

The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) says that’s what its researchers found in a one-day investigative blitz. The group is calling for new regulations on pet sales, and says an outdated Animal Welfare Act that doesn’t address online sales has become a loophole for unscrupulous breeders to sell directly to consumers.

Tracy Coppola, campaigns officer with IFAW, says they found hundreds of “puppy mill” ads that promised to deliver any type of puppy, anywhere in the country and with no pre-sc...

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