According to Jessica Kamish of rescue group Pug Partners of Nebraska and the new pet supply store, Green Spot Omaha, Petland in Omaha is closing its doors.
The Omaha Petland has been open at its present location since 2003 under several different management teams. Including the Omaha Petland, there are 140 Petland stores in the United States and several in seven other countries. A handful of Petland stores in America and now all Petlands in Canada adopt out rescued dogs instead of selling puppies. The Petland in Omaha was not one of those Petlands. Most Petland stores in the United States, including the Omaha Petland, sold puppies in very large numbers and representing many breeds and mixes of breeds. The puppies were shipped to the store from off-site sources.
On visiting the Omaha Petland with my family today, we found that the store was open but being run by an auction company. No Petland team members were available for comment. The auction staff was able to confirm that Petland was indeed closing and not merely relocating, but did not know the reason for the closing.
Here is Where My Objective Reporting Ends…
My suspicion is that Petland is closing for financial reasons. My suspicion for the underlying reason for the financial issues is that Omaha is no longer willing to buy puppies if we do not know if their parents are well treated. We have a wonderful humane society in Omaha – Nebraska Humane Society. We have wonderful rescue groups. We even have wonderful breeders – “professional” and “family” breeders – in and around Omaha.
A friend asked me yesterday about choosing a purposely bred puppy wisely. I told him that an almost foolproof test is to ask if you can meet the mama. If you do, and if you have a good feeling about the overall situation, you will almost always be choosing wisely. It is not, of course that simple, and does not help with adopting rescued pets as much as adopting from a breeder, but I still think it is a good consideration, and a test which Petland was not able to pass.
I know some wonderful puppies from Petland. I know some wonderful people who have puppies from Petland. I know some of the “heartbreak” stories of health train wrecks too. Omaha has moved past the need for Petland, and they have quietly closed up shop. I am quietly saying in response, as a pet lover, as a veterinarian, and as a proud citizen of Omaha, that I am glad.