Ebay’s New Outlet for Puppy Mill Sales, Classified Ads

by Mary Haight on February 17, 2011

Image representing eBay as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

It all began when Ebay, driven by public outcry, shut down the sale of pets on their auction site.  There was a flurry of news about what good corporate citizens they were, how they had no clue their customers would not want to see live animals for sale on their site, or what was behind customers’ concerns. Now that they knew about heinous puppy mills, they would not allow that practice on Ebay ever again…except when they did.  That juicy wedge of revenue was just too tasty to pass up.  Ebay Classifieds entered the picture and became the depository for all puppy mill, bad breeder ads.  It was a great place to hide their profitable pet connection.  There’s nothing innocent in what they did here.

Now Ebay’s making claims of safeguarding the animals, checking they are not being shipped before 8 weeks, blah blah blah.  No one is taken in by this spin. However, puppy mills everywhere commend them for services rendered.

While Ebay administrators are busy amending the words on their site, the animals they allow to be sold in their classifieds will continue to suffer. This marketplace should be shut down. It’s the only way to stop the 24/7/365 cruelty of puppy mills, stop the killing of perfectly healthy pets at shelters, stop this heinous practice.

Online sales of animals is a regulatory Wild West.  Any animal you buy online is suspect. The ASPCA has a good page of information on this issue, and this quote will underscore the dangers of internet sales:

The AWA [Animal Welfare Act] was passed in 1966, prior to the Internet boom—lawmakers couldn’t foresee that commercial breeders would someday have the ability to sell directly to the public via the Internet. This loophole allows some puppy mills to operate without a license and without fear of inspection—meaning they are not accountable to anyone for their breeding and care standards. According to a recent ASPCA survey, 89 percent of all “breeders” selling over the Internet are unlicensed by USDA

 Any good breeder will insist on an interview with you, and you should insist on meeting them, seeing the home they are raised in, meeting the parents of the litter, getting proof of genetic testing, checking the contract and return policy–just a few of the highlights. (Check with Best Friends on how to differentiate good from bad breeders.)

I see from Stephanie Feldstein’s update a few days ago that cosmetic changes have been made to Ebay’s classifieds, with safety warnings about buying and selling pets online. Please take up the challenge to shake Ebay’s executives awake on this issue once and for all (we can only hope); click the link  and sign the petition.  There are 12,161 signatures at this writing.  We are pushing for 15,000 hopefully much more. They need to know this matters. Will you help?

 The petition banner  is in the right margin. The animals will thank you!  Ebay can always, as Feldstein suggests, partner with Petfinder, and I would add Adopt-a-Pet.  Lead, don’t follow – join the adoption revolution Ebay!

Enhanced by Zemanta
25 comments
Kim
Kim

I agree, Great Post Mary! And yes; it is also great that so many people are having their say with the petition and making an impact. Personally, I'm against the sale of animals in any way, shape or form but (and I keep re-iterating this), until we give animals the rights they deserve, people will keep using them to make money and will find ways to do it no matter what.

Pixel Blue Eyes
Pixel Blue Eyes

My name is Pixel and I am a rescued breeder puppy. The place I was born was not all that great. My mommy just signed the petition you mentioned, and it has over 85,000 signatures! She and I had NO IDEA about that situation with eBay. I know I was rescued from a breeder that forced me to have my tail docked painfully and improperly. All breeder tail docking should be banned, but that is another fight altogether. (Mommy and I are working on that one!) I appreciate your site bringing this illegal puppy mill online issue to light, and I pray for justice for all those little ones suffering like I once did. I do write a blog myself, Pixel Blue Eyes and her 'Tails of Adventure' that you all might like. Lots of cool stories, as only a dog can tell, with many funny photos and videos of my adventures. Please stop by at [the link in my name above]. I would love to have you follow it. Thanks for your worthy writing!! Pixel

Mel
Mel

Wow. Great post Mary. I was dismayed to read LisaB's comments. It seems like ever ytime we stop these people in one spot, they pop up in another. It's so frustrating. I also noticed that after I tweeted how adopted dogs (mixes) appeared to only appear at the very end of the list of puppy mill dogs that they changed this and by last night they had put more adoption dogs up towards the front of the list. But, no matter how they change the wording or how they change the positioning of the dogs, they are still supporting the sale of puppies from puppy mills while the puppies parents continue to suffer. I wish eBay would listen and stop the sales of puppies. Up to nearly 80,000 signatures the last I checked.

ellen green
ellen green

Unfortunately by the time puppy mills are found out many good dogs have been badly affected by their treatment there - because puppy prices are so expensive for even some mixed breeds, they are becoming a commodity instead of a loved pet for some people. Ellen

Stephanie Feldstein
Stephanie Feldstein

Thanks for posting this, Mary. We're coming up on 55,000 signatures now! It's true that unscrupulous breeders and puppy mills will pose as rescue groups, but if eBay insists on "helping animals find homes" and wants to be seen as a compassionate corporate citizen, then they need to publicly support adoption-only. Right now, the door is wide open at eBay Classifieds for sketchy sellers (and buyers) -- I look at my local listings and see litter after litter of underage puppies and designer dogs listed by "unregistered users."

Julie
Julie

Ebay and everyone else should check out http://adopt.dogtime.com/. A clean adoptable pet database that has been scrubbed for puppy mills and breeders posing as rescues. Ebay should partner with DogTime Media and support their adoptable pet database.

Ashley Taylor
Ashley Taylor

I just signed. There are over 21,000 signatures!

LisaB
LisaB

Unfortunately, a growing number of puppy mills operate on petfinder as well. Petfinder doesn't have a way to regulate who can advertise dogs on the site. And the mills -- who are masters of deception -- now use the term "adopt" instead of "buy" to make it seem like they are a rescue. Any rescue that only has young pups, usually purebred or designer dogs, is NOT a rescue. It's a scary, sad world out there for the dogs and unless the puppy buyer/adopter is educated, the cycle will continue.

Traci
Traci

Please Ebay do not do this. Partner with petfinder. it is the only decent thing to do!

Trackbacks

  1. […] uncomfortable because Ebay UK owns Gumtree (UK equivalent of craigslist), which is BYB Central. Ebay Classifieds Sell Puppy Mill Puppies | Dancing Dog Blog Ebay Classifieds: Stop Selling Live Animals | […]

  2. […] The Dancing Dog Blog […]

  3. […] February, and in case you need your memory jogged, here’s the background and commentary on the Ebay outlet for puppy mill sales .  It is especially sad to hear that nothing substantive has been done after all the claims of good […]

  4. […] Pet Sales on Ebay Classifieds […]

Previous post:

Next post: