Don’t buy that puppy please!
Puppy hawkers have little or no regard for the welfare of animals, who to them are simply commodities of trade.
They rely heavily on the animal loving communities who will do anything to rescue a puppy in this condition regardless of the cost. Do not be emotionally blackmailed! In spite of your best intentions, buying a puppy from a hawker perpetuates a cycle of abuse and cruelty. These individuals are likely to be breeding indiscriminately, with no concern for their breeding females whose living conditions are comparable to puppy mills. The little ones are often removed from their mothers at an extremely young age, they are often unhealthy and in some instances genetically defective. Additionally, puppies have in the past been stolen to perpetrate this illegal trade from loving homes in and around Grahamstown.
You could also be unwittingly introducing disease and parasites into your home that could affect the health of your pets and your family! Mange is a zoonotic disease that transfers to humans as scabies. Worms and fleas can also be passed on to your family members and the chances are that the puppy you have just bought is not vaccinated and potentially ill with Canine Distemper or Parvo Virus – both deadly and extremely contagious canine diseases.
We are working in collaboration with law enforcement agencies to stop the illegal hawking of animals and also looking to propose amendments to the Animal By- laws to ensure harsher sentences for perpetrators. So what should you do if you see a Puppy hawker? • The greatest assistance will come from members of the public not supporting this trade. By purchasing an animal from the street, you're creating a market and the demand and supply economics factors are set in motion. • Instead, immediately report the the puppy vendor with as much information as possible.. • If anybody tries to sell you a puppy at a street corner, please contact SAPS immediately on 046603911, the SPCA on 0466223233 (or the 24hr SPCA Emergency Line 0648208496).
Remember too, that if you are looking for a pet, you can adopt from the SPCA. We have healthy, loving puppies and adult dogs looking to become a part of a family like yours. You’ll find that while many are wonderful mix breeds, most shelters have purebreds too!
Animals are a lifelong commitment and each year we see hundreds of unwanted animals coming back from all kinds of backgrounds, where people either do not have the means or in some cases from students who are leaving Grahamstown at the end of their studies and suddenly the animal is no longer part of their life. If you are a student, please be responsible by volunteering at the SPCA, which can give so much love to animals that need it without the long term responsibility of caring for one in your digs. Please help your SPCA to help all animals in need. – Mark Thomas is the manager of the SPCA