Rabbit Advocacy Animal Matters


Petland Corporate History  (from their website)

Petland, Inc. is a privately held Ohio corporation founded in 1967. Initially, Petland owned and operated retail pet stores in Ohio, West Virginia and Kentucky. In the early 1970's, Petland began franchising pet stores and entered the business of wholesale distribution for pet-related merchandise. In the late 1980's, Petland expanded its presence in Canada and entered international markets in Japan, France, and in the 1990's to Chile and in 2001 to South Africa through master franchise agreements. Petland currently has 140 stores in the United States and 63 in foreign markets. More than 25 new domestic stores are scheduled to open within the next twelve months.

Petland Canada is a Canadian owned full line pet store franchise and as a Master Franchisor, Petland Canada has the rights to Canada. The development of this franchise has been due to Robert and Barbara Brissette who have owned and operated the Canadian Petland chain since 1979.

Comment:  The expanding pet trade is competing among itself to garner a greater share of the market.  Animals, birds, fish – whatever the species, it’s misery and death for all those exploited by the industry.  As a consumer, you have the power to choose to BOYCOTT stores selling ‘livestock.’  Make your voice heard and be a rallying force to STOP ANIMAL SUFFERING!

Petland has received a lot of negative press as the following media report indicates. 

From whotv.com

Channel 13 Investigation: Petland Accused of Selling Sick Puppies

March 12, 2008--It's only been a couple of months since the Petland in West Des Moines opened its doors, but since then, Channel 13 has received a number of complaints the store is selling sick dogs.

"This whole time she was having seizures and it ended up getting worse. She ended up foaming at the mouth going into convulsions," says Jessica Halbrook.  Jessica and her husband John bought their Siberian husky, Giada  on January 23rd. Three weeks later, Giada got so sick, the Halbrooks were forced to put her down.

Two more dogs purchased at Petland were also diagnosed with parvo, one of the most severe and lethal diseases a dog can get. One veterinarian told the store's owner, Tim Mohrfeld, to quit selling dogs for two weeks. But Mohrfeld decided otherwise, "We went completely through our kennels did a bleach solution, took recommendation from several vets on how to approach it and haven't had a problem since."

Petland Investigation: Part 2

March 13, 2008--Channel 13's Sonya Heitshusen has been investigating the West Des Moines Petland, after receiving several complaints of the store selling sick puppies.  One Ankeny couple says they had to put down their new puppy after only three weeks of having it. Is Petland knowingly selling consumers sick dogs?

Owner of Petland, Tim Mohrfeld, claims his store doesn't sell sick puppies.  "These puppies do not come from puppy mills. They're the healthiest and highest quality we can find," says Mohrfeld. 

But Channel 13 has learned at least two dogs purchased at Petland in the past two months contracted parvo , one of the deadliest diseases a dog can get. When we asked Tim Mohrfeld, where they were bred, he denied they came from a breeder in southeast Iowa named Steve Kruse.  Yet Kruse's name was found on several certificates of pedigree on dogs purchased at Petland, including one that had parvo.

Animal rights advocates say Kruse breeds hundreds of dogs on his farm in southern Iowa. When we asked Kruse if he supplies Petland with puppies, he hung up on us.

More stories can be found at: http://www.petstorecruelty.org/In the news.htm

The Hunte Corporation is currently the largest puppy dealer/broker in the U.S., selling 90,000 puppies every year to retail pet stores. Located in Goodman, Missouri, the corporation’s facility receives puppies from independent, USDA-licensed breeders/ puppy mills and then resells them to pet stores all across the country, including many Petlands.  Hunte has been repeatedly quoted that by running the largest puppy-selling business in the country, he is following “God’s plan,” and is providing quality pets to families. Their motto is “Hunte: Doing What’s Right” 

Breeders either drop the puppies off at the Hunte building or a Hunte truck goes out to pick them up. The puppies are checked over by Hunte employees. The breeders expect to receive a certain price from Hunte depending on the breed of dog, but if Hunte decides the puppies are not very healthy, they may offer the breeder less money. The breeders usually accept the lower price, as they have no use for the puppies. Hunte's "Grade A" puppies, the supposedly healthier ones, are sent to pet stores. The "Grade B" puppies, the sicklier ones, are sold in other ways. We understand that some are sold to people who sell dogs over the Internet or through newspaper ads. Others were formerly sold at Missouri flea markets and in Canada, but now are apparently often ending up at the huge Canton Flea Market in Texas, which sells dogs, cats and other animals by the hundreds. 

Andrew Hunte and his wife have been breeding dogs for 30 years as well as running their own pet stores. The family has been owners, at different times, of Petlands in the Kansas City area, Joplin, and the new Springfield, Mo., Petland.  Steve Rook (Hunte’s president) is married to Hunte’s daughter, Jessica, and is part of Hunte’s practice of creating companies behind other companies.   According to the Missouri Secretary of State, Mr Hunte owns 18 companies, all incorporated in that state.  Companies such as JessAnd (Jessica/Andrew), JesStevAnd, and Jes/Steve.

Petland Linked to Puppy Mills 

November 20, 2008

Nov. 20, 2008—Today, during a news conference, The Humane Society of the United States reveals the results of an eight-month investigation into Petland Inc., the country's largest chain of puppy-selling pet stores. The results show that many Petland stores across the country are supporting cruel puppy mills, even while telling unsuspecting customers that the dogs only come from good breeders. 

There are approximately 140 Petland stores in the U.S., selling tens of thousands of puppies each year. In the largest ever puppy mill investigation, HSUS investigators visited 21 Petland stores and 35 breeders and brokers who sold puppies to Petland stores. Investigators also reviewed interstate import records of an additional 322 breeders, USDA reports and more than 17,000 individual puppies linked to Petland stores.

According to Stephanie Shain, director of The HSUS Stop Puppy Mills Campaign, "Petland is perpetuating the abusive puppy mill industry, where dogs are treated not like pets, but like a cash crop. They know that consumers won't stand for the cruelty inherent in mass-breeding facilities, so they make outrageous claims to hide the reality that the dogs came from puppy mills. People have a right to know exactly what they are buying, but the real victims are the breeding dogs who are confined to life in a cage for as long as people are duped into buying their puppies." 

This is the latest in a series of HSUS investigations exposing abuses at puppy mills, dog auctions, and pet stores around the country. The new Petland investigation revealed: 

•  Despite assurances by Petland staff and on their corporate website that the company knows its breeders and deals only with those who have "the highest standards of pet care," many Petland puppies come from massive commercial breeders in Missouri and other Midwestern states, where hundreds of breeding dogs are packed into cramped, barren cages—often for their entire lives, with no socialization, exercise, or human interaction.

•  When HSUS investigators visited 35 of the large-scale breeding operations linked to Petland stores, they witnessed puppy mills where puppies are factory-farmed in large numbers. At many, investigators saw appalling conditions: puppies living in filthy, barren cages reeking of urine, with inadequate care and socialization.

•  Many of Petland's puppies are not supplied directly by breeders but are purchased from a "middle man"—large-scale "pet distributors," otherwise known as brokers—showing that the company may not even know who the breeders are or what their standards of care may be like.  The investigation revealed that some of Petland's brokers are also buying from puppy mills.

•  Some of Petland's puppies are ordered online via a pet auction website called the Pet Board of Trade—demonstrating that many Petland stores are not screening breeders as the company's website claims. In fact, in some cases it may not even know the breeder's name until after purchase.

•  One of the most common sales pitches made by Petland staff is that the company uses "USDA licensed" breeders.  However, investigators reviewed publicly available state and USDA inspection reports for more than 100 Petland breeders and found more than 60 percent of the reports listed serious violations of basic animal care regulations. Many USDA breeders exhibit a long history of substandard care and yet remained licensed. While USDA regulations are minimal, some of the Petland breeders are not even complying with these basic animal welfare standards. 

•  Documented USDA violations at some of Petland's breeders and suppliers included dirty, unkempt enclosures; inadequate shelter from the cold; dogs kept in too small cages; and inadequate veterinary care. Some of the breeders were found with sick or dead dogs in their cages.

Puppy mills are a source of unbearable cruelty where breeding animals are kept in tiny cages without any socialization for the sole purpose of supplying pet stores and the Internet market with puppies. The HSUS urges all of its members and supporters to spread the word about the great suffering associated with these mills, which also contribute to tragic pet overpopulation.

Help us in our efforts to reform this antiquated & oppressive industry.

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Read more: Discussion and concerns on Petland stores in BC

Akron Petland closes after worker drowns rabbits; Robinson Petland, PA, under scrutiny

USDA: Regulate Unlicensed Puppy Mills; the Animal Welfare Act; ASPCA campaign; puppy mill statistics

Our Horrible Hundred report exposes 100 puppy mills that sell to pet stores and online

May 10, 2021 Kitty Block and Sara Amundson  HSUS

Our undercover photos and even the inspection reports of some of these operations reveal that federal and state inspection systems are failing these dogs. This year’s report underscores that the need for reform could not be more urgent.........