The national campaign, launched in July 2011, raises awareness about the connection between pet stores and puppy mills, with the goal of reducing the demand for puppy mill puppies by urging consumers not to purchase any pet products from a store or website that sells puppies.
The pledge milestone was reached four days after the US Department of Agriculture proposed a new rule that would increase federal oversight of puppy mills and online dog sales. The new legislation would target these puppy mills, requiring that large-scale commercial breeders that sell puppies directly to consumers to be licensed and inspected by USDA.
“The success of our 'No Pet Store Puppies' campaign and this significant milestone send a clear message that the public does not support the inhumane breeding of dogs,” said Laurie Beacham, senior director of strategy & campaigns. “Consumer action is a critical element in the fight against puppy mills, and convincing consumers not to shop for anything at stores and on websites that sell puppies is a powerful tool in stopping the demand for puppy mill dogs.”
ASPCA's public awareness campaign also includes targeted online ads and outdoor billboards that were posted in cities across the US to raise awareness about the connection between pet stores and puppy mills and to encourage adoption of a pet from a local animal shelter or rescue organization.