Consumers Unite in Lawsuit Against Nation’s Largest Online Dog Broker

Life With Dogs is reader-supported. We may earn a small commission through products purchased using links on this page.
Puppy mill dogs live a life of confinement and suffering.

Fifty former customers of online puppy seller Purebred Breeders LLC have joined a lawsuit (CASE NO: ll-38180CA02, filed in THE ELEVENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT, MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA) against the company alleging that they were misled into buying sick or injured dogs. The suit was amended and filed by consumer justice law firm Leopold Law of Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., in partnership with lawyers from The Humane Society of the United States.

The lawsuit alleges that Purebred Breeders violated Florida state consumer protection laws by misleading consumers into believing that the puppies it sold were healthy and came from high-quality breeders, when the dogs came from inhumane breeding facilities, also known as puppy mills, all across the country. The lawsuit also alleges that Purebred Breeders runs nearly 800 Web domains designed to mislead consumers into believing that they are dealing with breeders in their home states when shopping online for a puppy.

Thought to be the largest online seller of dogs in the country, the Florida-based company sells as many as 20,000 puppies a year over the Internet, according to whistleblowers who worked for the company. The Better Business Bureau has given the company a C-minus rating due to the number of complaints from consumers and other factors.

Shortly before the lawsuit was first filed in November, The HSUS released the results of a investigation into Purebred Breeders. The investigation was featured on NBC’s Today Show on December 7, 2011.

Since the filing of the lawsuit, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has proposed a federal rule to close a loophole that allows hundreds of large-scale commercial puppy mills to operate without federal inspections or oversight.

The rule, which would be implemented under the federal Animal Welfare Act, would require large-scale, commercial breeders and dealers who sell puppies to members of the public “sight unseen,” including those who sell over the Internet, such as Purebred Breeders and their suppliers, to be licensed and inspected and abide by the same basic standards of care as those who sell wholesale to pet stores.

The USDA is accepting public comments on the proposed rule through July 16.

0 thoughts on “Consumers Unite in Lawsuit Against Nation’s Largest Online Dog Broker”

  1. I personally believe that living, breathing things shouldn’t be sold over the internet … glad to see some movement to curb online sales of dogs by puppy mills.

    Reply
  2. If anyone wants a purebred dog these days only have to look at most animal shelters where their owners give them up. I own a purebred and love her but had I known I could gotten an AKC registered dog like her at the animal shelter then I would have.

    Reply
  3. Responsible breeders who care about the puppies they breed and the buyers of those puppies do not broker through third parties. They screen the potential buyers themselves. They ask questions about the potential buyer’s family, past dog owning experience, small children in the home, rent or own, is the yard fenced, etc. We care about the lives we are responsible for.

    Reply

Leave a Comment