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Unethical dog businesses

From time to time we will share news and reports of claims about other owner's bad experience with dog services in Singapore, this although could be baseless claims, are actually very important for people to take note of. Our goal is not to side either parties, but to let viewers decide for themselves whether or not to take preventive measures, we stand on the side of dogs and will not tolerate them being made used of.

We recently shared a claim about a pet store selling puppies that seemed to have contacted diseases when it was brought home, the conversation stated that this pet store promised the puppy is in good health before purchase was made, apparently after a couple of days this was not the case, the pet store then blamed on the owner for not bringing the puppy back right away when it showed symptoms, this was also not the first case from the particular pet store, hence we simply shared a screenshot of a conversation between a customer and the pet store, we hoped that if this was true, the pet store would take notice (of our post) and be responsible for their actions. Even if it weren't, people should always to note if they are about to buy a puppy, to also check on their dogs throughly no matter which pet store they go to, however after receiving threats, we decided to clarify this to avoid misunderstandings in future.

Some people commented on the share, saying that the claim was one sided, we replied that it was up to anyone to decide what they want to believe as the conversation included both parties - we wanted people to take extra precaution even if they wanted to purchase dogs from elsewhere. Apparently after sharing the news on our page, the pet store offered to take the puppy back, shortly, reviews too started to appear on our Facebook page, claiming that we push owners to sign up for our 1 month intensive training as an obedience option, saying that dogs became aggressive after going for Intensive Training with us, even to the extend of forgetting who their owners were, we investigated this matter, only finding out that these "reviewers" were using fake accounts - they were only created hours ago for some reason, the claim did not match any of our policy either. For your information, people enquire and ask us for advice on training classes willingly, we do not do hard selling or force anyone to sign up for anything, we'd even give free advice without expecting anything in return, you can ask around and see for yourselves. Before intensive training (rehabilitation) is suggested, we will clearly state that Obedience classes are mandatory for owners to learn how to handle their dogs after their dogs trained with us, our Intensive Training program is designed to let dogs forget any bad habits and traumatizing experiences when with us, to start anew before returning to their owners, people consult us for this training due to many reasons, ranging from serious aggression, housebreaking to owner's busy work schedule, we do take time to talk to them and advice them the proper procedures before considering any programs. After rehabilitation, all owners are encouraged to go for Obedience training to keep up with what their dogs have learned, we will never force anything out of the owners, it is their choice and we have always respected that. Of all dogs that came for Intensive Training, we are happy to say that every single one of them showed improvements, so far we have 100% success rate (all dogs showed positive improvements) and no, none of the dogs "forgot" who their owner were upon returning, dogs are intelligent animals, they can remember their owners even years after parting, obviously we were targeted by someone who was unhappy and creating false claims out of nowhere.

If you had read our blog right from the beginning, you may have noticed a maltipoo named Mary Jane, she was purchased by a friend at a pet store, we even said that it was one of the cleanest and seemed ethical compared to other pet stores at the farm, we did not have any hates nor issues with the place. Things started to change when we went for a second visit, it got even worst on the third visit (on a weekday), the shop was not as well maintained, dogs did not look as clean as before, the whole environment of the farm had gotten even worst! Recently there is even a case of a young puppy being found with ticks, the owner asked for a deposit refund and the pet store rejected the demand, most owners would have given up and bring the dog back but these owners truly care, they are filing for a CASE complain, hopefully the pet store can be exposed of their neglect. The reason why we do not support pet stores breeding dogs is because more and more of them are showing signs of abnormal behaviors and/or health problems, ranging from inherited skin problems, ticks/fleas infestation, undescended testicles, incontinence to abnormal behaviors like puppy aggression, fear & extreme crate sensitivity, most local breeders only care about features and not their traits, owners will only understand when they have to face the consequences months or years later, when their dogs start to show abnormal behavior/health symptoms. While parentage is important to ensure dogs inherit good traits, proper care of puppies are also very important, when you see dogs being placed together in a crate for sale at pet stores, that area is not where they will be staying at night, they will be in yet another crate where no one will be monitoring how they behave, when we say behave, it means monitoring on their behaviors, not checking whether or not they are still alive, this can be traumatizing and can cause anxiety attacks especially in young puppies, more so when they are removed from their mother before 3 months old. Puppies may also be kept together with their siblings, most will think that it is a good idea for socializing, it's not, without the mother, these puppies do not know their limits, the stronger ones will bully the weak, this builds two sided characteristics when the dog grows - the strong becomes dominant, the weak becomes fearful, thus it is very hard to get puppies with good traits, the outcome will be based on buyer's experience and luck. To add on, while these puppies are protected by the law to prevent them from being sold till they reach a certain age, they are placed like a vase for sale in the day, when this happens they will not get the proper care and socialization by the mother, this once again affects their growth. Even if it's true that they will stay with their mother at night, this is still not enough! What we share does not apply to any particular pet store, it happens to 90% of pet stores/puppy mills in Singapore, we are slowly uncovering them one by one and many are not happy about this.

Now the only problem is that some of them tries to make buyers think otherwise, that they are friendly, clean, hygiene and different from others, some even claim that they are professional self breeders when they are simply creating their own puppy mill at a much cheaper cost, we have been fooled once and that is enough to last a lifetime. Well what you see is just the front, will they let you visit the breeding ground? Would they dare to show you the mother dogs when they give birth? Do you think that the breeding ground is as clean as the sale area? Once again this is up to you to decide.

Sweet faces aside, if a pet store is breeding puppies with bad health and behavior, doesn't it benefit veterinarians and dog trainers? Wouldn't it benefit us if we have more people engaging in our training? We are actually in a win-win situation, why would we take the risk of ruining our reputation or even stop others from getting badly behaved dogs when we can benefit from this?

It's because we care about dogs more than just money.

Most dog lovers will never breed to sell dogs, there are millions of other ways to engage in dog related businesses and breeding/selling dogs should be the last option in their mind. Of course there are ethical ones that truly cares about the well being of the dogs, they breed with care and understand a lot about what they are doing, however these people do not advertise, they will never put their puppies behind a glass for sale, they probably only have one litter a year and it gets sold out really fast, well these breeders are very rare in Singapore, so don't come to us saying that your pet store is ethical and such, good breeders will never need a shop to advertise, people will hunt for them instead! If you don't mind trying, walk up to your pet store, ask them, "why would you sell/breed puppies?", if one truly love dogs they will not create more unnecessary lives.

With each experience, we grow stronger and become more assured in the path we are walking towards, we want to give dogs a better life by strengthening on breeding practices and warn others about unethical pet stores in Singapore, we do not care about what you selfish businesses think, you can destroy our reputation but if the dogs can be saved, it's worth it. However, do understand that we do not hate and will never hold grudges, every now and then we will revisit the place and if there are changes, we will not hesitate to change our views either.

I'm sure some of you may know this, Amber was bought from an SKC breeder, as much as we love her, we cannot deny that she has some behavior and health issues, she has tail sensitivity due to being docked over the average limit, it stands at only about 3cm maximum, this causes her to walk sideways when the wind is blowing, our hearts always sink when this happens, we feel sad but we choose to smile and guide her with treats. Amber also has hyper characteristics, which will make her much harder to train than other dogs, this is inherited from her parents, she needs at least an hour exercises daily considering her 3kg body weight, she also needs very firm handling, those who have met her will understand, we very much know our dog's weakness and how it happens, aside from some behavior issues which can be rectified with knowledge and experience, Amber is actually considered very healthy. It will be unfair if inexperienced owners get dogs with not only behavior, but also health issues, this will only make their life harder and this increases the abandoning rate of dogs, many people blame the owners for neglecting their dogs but they do not understand that a lot of times the breeder plays a big part too, hope this post can let everyone understand more about unethical practices and how we are playing a part to save the dogs.

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