Letters to the Editor

The Guest Viewpoint (Aug. 4) by Scott Reeder, “Noble intention misguided in HB1711,” is appalling and so far from the truth that it’s offensive. 

As an informed victim on this particular topic, one who has worked with multiple advocates and organizations, I feel Mr. Reeder should educate himself substantially more before writing anything on the topic.

My dog came from a retail chain pet store in Bolingbrook and died after three weeks due to multiple illnesses and incorrect vaccine administration by the puppy mill (because what do they care? Ship ’em out.).

My dog was bred in a puppy mill in Iowa. The mill is able to operate under the lax rules of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), which provides little protection for these animals.

For example, the breeder that my dog came from committed a USDA violation due to inadequate veterinarian care by letting a poor sheltie’s (not my dog) gaping wound on her leg or paw go unattended for an unknown amount of time.

Guess what the breeder did after being found in violation? It canceled the USDA number under which it was operating and applied for and was granted a new one so the violation would be hidden.

I know this because I filed a Freedom of Information Act request and went through the paperwork. None of this was disclosed to me upon my purchase at the retail chain pet store. Is that an honest selling practice? I think disclosing that would be considered consumer choice. Hiding sordid information to sell a $3,000 dog is not the choice that Illinois consumers want.

Sadly, I am only one of thousands of similar cases throughout the U.S. It’s the same thing over and over, and Illinois is finally going to take a stand, hopefully, regardless of ignorant people like Mr. Reeder and his immoral opinion.

As for pet store owners and eliminating their jobs, that is a joke. It’s the owners’ responsibility to adopt a humane business model, and if they refuse to do so, that’s their problem.

Illinois consumers and animals should not be victimized because these owners chose to open a morally corrupt business that supports puppy mills and dog abusers.

There is plenty of documentation that shows Ana Soksic has purchased from questionable breeders that operate inhumanely, regardless of what she claims. Please do some research of your own before publishing such an irresponsible guest viewpoint.

In his commentary, Mr. Reeder said he loves animals.

“ I can’t bear the thought of any dog or cat living in circumstances that are less than humane. However, that shouldn’t be surprising because I’m the son and husband of veterinarians.”

Just because you write these things, Mr. Reeder, doesn’t make them true; you’re actively supporting the harm of animals, so at least own it. 

Dogs and consumers deserve better than this sloppy, biased trash.

Caitlin McElroy