Animal Writes
7 March 1999 Issue

Puppy Mill Auction

The Sabin auction went much as I expected. A few things I didn't expect...
such as Dale Sabin leading us all in prayer before they started selling the dogs.
I can't recall the exact words but it went something like this...

"...If more people in our Country had better morals, from our President
to the dog breeders, the Nation would be a much better place to live."

Hmmmm, food for thought huh?

Well, his place was also much as I expected. Converted chicken houses
and mobile homes were the only homes these dogs knew. The stench was
incredible. It appeared that someone (probably his 9 kids) tried to clean the
place before the sale. The large dog pens that had concrete had attempted
to be washed. Although there were still many piles of feces, you can tell that it
had been much worse. The pores of the concrete were feces filled and instead
of a white or gray color that the concrete should have been, it was brown.
The dogs that had white paws were a clear indicator of the filth that they lived in.
Their paws were feces and urine covered about half way up.

The smaller cages were stacked 2 story buildings and they wouldn't let me in
them. Here I thought I was doing a pretty good undercover job....NOT!
Comments were made about me when I entered the tent and I couldn't go
anywhere without an armed escort. Yes, an ARMED escort!

Sabin had hired security and you couldn't enter his property without filling
out a release form and showing I.D. They even wrote down your license plate
numbers. Well, thank goodness for fake I.D. and a borrowed car. (I had just
got a load of wood and didn't have time to unload it so I borrowed a friends
car to drive down there in).

Every dog pen and dog house had a Sabin child stationed at it. One of the
saddest things I witnessed was the younger boys (I am assuming they were
Sabin's kids) who were about 8-10 years old. They walked around with 10 ft.
pipes and poked at the dogs in the cages. The purpose of this was to get the
dogs to the inside of the cages so they could be grabbed and taken to the
auction table. These dogs were so terrified of their owners that they would run
to the outside cage when the owners tried to grab them. I guess it was even
more terrifying to be poked with a pipe so they would run to the inside of the
cage, only to be grabbed and taken to the tent.

One stacked wire cage held a golden retriever and her 4 puppies (who
appeared to be about 4 weeks old). The golden and all the puppies were on a
wire floored cage that was about the same size as the mamma dog. There
wasn't even a place for the puppies to lie and they had to lie on top of the
mother...that or be laid on by the mother.

I did bid on a double dapple dachshund that was blind. I saw her in one of the
cages and you could tell that she knew someone was there. She bumped into
all sides of the cage before she found my waiting finger. I think she thought it
was food because she would lick and bite on it. The cage wire was very tiny
and I couldn't fit more than a finger through it. I wanted so much to hold and
love on his dog. At one point she turned around and I saw that there was a
large matted clump of hair hanging from her mouth. It reminded me of the hair
you clean from the drain of your bathtub. It was tangled around her teeth and
I can only imagine how long it had been there. She pawed at it regularly to try
to remove it. I managed to get my finger in just enough to get a hold of it and
after several tries was able to remove it. Even after it was gone, she kept
pawing at her face like it was still there. I think it had been there for so long
that it was just habit. No one would bid on her so I hollered, "I'll give you
$5.00." Everyone chuckled a little and then they announced "She's
swelling up...she'll be ready to breed any time." Despite being about 8 months
old and blind, she sold for $150.00. I walked out with tears in my eyes.
How I wish I were rich!

I couldn't stay any longer, so I got in my car and left. I had seen a kennel on
my way to the auction that I wanted to check out. When I got there I saw one
of the local TV stations parked there. I could hear something or someone
knocking....I think it was called I boldly approached them and
told them who I was. They had been at the Sabin auction but were ordered to
leave by the Sheriff. Sabin never let them on the property. The news crew
met me up the road, across from the auction and interviewed me.

The press coverage has only just begun. I am working with a major network
now and it is just a matter of time before we get what we have been striving for -
National coverage.

Dog auctions are legal, we won't stop them, but everyone in the Nation should
know where these pet shop puppies come from and soon they will. Thanks to
all of you for your continued support. There are a few new advertisers on the
site that I will be highlighting in the next post I make. Please visit their sites
and thank them for their support of .

Also, please take the time to email the Missouri TV station that ran the Sabin
story. They are KOLR (CBS affiliate) in Springfield, MO. Their EMAIL is:
[email protected]

The new auction information is up at:

Source: Kelly Cruzan <[email protected]>

[Editor's Note: It's a real quandary for those in animal rescue to know
whether to pay money at puppy mill auctions in order to rescue the dogs.
Doing so puts money in the breeders pockets and keeps them in business.
Not doing so condemns the dogs in their "care" to further horrors. Saving
one dog so the puppy mill breeder can get another to abuse is not going to
stop the problem any more than buying puppies from a pet shop in order to
"rescue" them. The only thing that WILL stop the problem is preventing the
puppy millers from making a profit. Don't let puppy millers use your money
to keep abusing dogs. And spread the word.]


Go on to Youth Viewpoint: Animal Liberties and Human Sacrifice
Return to 7 March 1999 Issue
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