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puppy mill awareness day



Started by Last Chance for Animals and other animal activists, National Puppy Mill Awareness Day (PMAD) takes place annually on the third Saturday of September to spread awareness of the sad truth behind the puppy mill industry and encourage the public to adopt and not purchase companion animals.

PMAD started in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in 2004, and now animal advocates across the United States join forces on this day by holding protests, organizing adoption events, and leading marches or walks.



Puppy mills are commercial dog breeding facilities. Every year, more than 2 million puppies are bred in puppy mills and sold for profit, despite overcrowding in animal shelters and the severe overpopulation of dogs.

Dogs in puppy mills are kept in cramped, filthy conditions and may have inadequate food, water, and medical care. Many of the breeder females are bred to death. They give birth to litter after litter and eventually become so beaten down that they cannot conceive anymore.  At this point, they are usually killed, since they are no longer able to make their owner money.  Puppies are sold to pet stores as young as 8 weeks old, many times with false paperwork and diseases yet to be discovered.  Illnesses are frequently overlooked, and animal health documents are easily modified.



On October 13, 2017, Governor Jerry Brown signed California A.B. 485: the Pet Rescue and Adoption Act into law, banning the retail sale of commercially bred dogs, cats, and rabbits in pet shops across the state. The law went into effect on January 1, 2019, and requires all California pet stores to only sell dogs, cats, and rabbits obtained from local pet shelters, humane societies, and rescues. California is the first state in the nation to pass such legislation, which aims to stop neglectful animal breeders from profiting off of the sale of dogs, cats, and rabbits in order to give California's homeless pets a greater chance of finding a home.



Puppy Mill Awareness Day brochure Puppy Mill Awareness Day brochure (part 2)


                     do not buy adopt poster           puppy mills breed misery     
                 "Do Not Buy Adopt" Poster   "Puppy Mills Breed Misery" Poster




PMAD 2018 - Lancaster, Pennsylvania and Austin, Texas

2018 PMAD Lancaster PAThe 9th Annual Puppy Mill Awareness Day event was held on September 16, 2018 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and on September 30, 2018 in Austin, Texas.

Both events were a huge success and many puppy mill survivors were in attendance and participated with their rescue families in the march to raise awareness.


PMAD 2017 - Lancaster, Pennsylvania

PMAD 2017On Sunday, September 17, 2017, PMAD was held in Lancaster, PA.

This event was a day of celebration for puppy mill survivors and all rescue animals. There was special guest speakers, games, a rescue parade, and much more.  





PMAD 2016 - Lancaster, Pennsylvania and Austin, Texas

On Sunday, September 16, 2016, PMAD was held in Lancaster, PA and Austin, TX. In Lancaster, activities included a march for puppy mill survivors and friends; booths featuring animal shelters, breed rescue groups, and other vendors; dog training sessions, and an array of other activities. Celebrity dog trainer Victoria Stillwell was in attendance for a Q&A session with the public. In Austin, a crowd of volunteers, rescue shelters, and vendors convened at Scholtz Garten restaurant for live entertainment, raffles, and awards for animals rescuers. The PMAD VIP Reception raised nearly $16,000 to help educate the public on puppy mill cruelty.

PMAD 2016 Lancaster PA

PMAD 2015 - Austin, Texas

On September 27, 2015, hundreds of people and their rescued companion animals gathered in Austin, Texas for the 6th Annual Puppy Mill Awareness Day event.  PMAD 2015, Austin, was a huge success, offering live music, animal-friendly vendors, multiple local animal rescues holding dog adoptions, an art auction, and a puppy mill awareness march.  Many puppy mill survivors were present and participated with their rescue families in the march to raise awareness.  
PMAD 2015

 PMAD 2014 - Chicago, Illinois

Signs and SkylineOn Sunday, September 21, 2014, the Puppy Mill Awareness Day "March on Michigan Avenue" took place again in Chicago, IL. Crowds of protesters met in front of the Tribune building, where the Chicago Tribune’s Steve Dale, City Clerk Susan Mendoza, and Commissioner John Fritchey spoke to the group in support of banning puppy mills.

The marchers then walked north down Chicago’s famed Magnificent Mile, waving signs and chanting “Hey, hey, ho, ho, puppy mill dogs have got to go"!


PMAD 2013 - Chicago, Illinois

Puppy Mill Awareness Day opt 2On Sunday, September 22, 2013, more than 200 people and many dogs including puppy mill survivors gathered in front of the Chicago Tribune building in Chicago, IL, to protest puppy mill cruelty on Puppy Mill Awareness Day.

The group marched down Michigan Avenue, known as the most popular shopping district in the Midwest, carrying signs and passing out leaflets to educate the public on the horrors of puppy mills. 



PMAD 2012 - Austin, Texas

On September 25th, 2012, hundreds of people showed up for Puppy Mill Awareness Day 2012 in Austin, TX to show their support to put an end to puppy mills, and to meet the courageous puppy mill survivors. Poison drummer Rikki Rockett, actress, and Texas native Shannon Elizabeth, "It's Me or the Dog" star Victoria Stilwell, and Animal Cops Houston's Randy Farmer joined LCA's Chris DeRose and Carol Araneo-Mayer, co-founder of rescue group Paws of Austin for the inspirational event.

PMAD2012 Austin Texas

Pictured left: Delilah Belle — Puppy Mill Survivor 

PMAD 2011 - Los Angeles

Puppymillawarenessdaylittlerock92411 14On Saturday, September 24th, 2011, LCA led a caravan of protestors to Littlerock, CA, about 60 miles north of Los Angeles, to protest the puppy mills which supply Los Angeles pet stores with puppies. This was the first time there has ever been a protest at the actual mills in California. 

One mill was World Kennels. LCA’s Special Investigations Unit discovered World Kennels in 2008 and found over 400 dogs at the facility. As a result of LCA’s investigation over 300 dogs were removed. At this protest we let World Kennels know that we haven’t forgotten about them and the other dogs languishing in the hot kennels and that we won’t stop until all the dogs are released. 

Several neighbors came out to talk to the protestors; they had no idea that this was going on in their own backyard. For too long the puppy millers have been able to hide in obscurity out in the Mojave Desert. On September 24th, we gave them notice that they can no longer do so. Whether it is in California, Pennsylvania, or anywhere in between, LCA will not stop until every cage is open.



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