Tuesday, November 30, 2021


Minority-owned Southern businesses get back on their feet post-pandemic with a fund's help; President Biden says don't panic over the new COVID variant; and eye doctors gauge the risk of dying from COVID.


U.S. Senate is back in session with a long holiday to-do list that includes avoiding a government shutdown; negotiations to revive the Iran Nuclear Deal resume; and Jack Dorsey resigns as CEO of Twitter.


South Dakota foster kids find homes with Native families; a conservative group wants oil and gas reform; rural Pennsylvania residents object to planes flying above tree tops; and poetry debuts to celebrate the land.

Is That Puppy You're Buying Healthy?


Friday, May 31, 2019   

DES MOINES, Iowa – In recent months, two Iowa communities have been asked to consider ordinances that would ban the purchase of commercially-raised dogs. The move followed the "Horrible Hundred" report by the Humane Society of the United States, that identified Iowa as the number two state for the worst puppy mills in the nation, according to inspection records by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Iowa had 13 breeders included among the worst offenders. Iowa's Mindi Callison owns Bailing Out Benji, an animal advocacy group. She says the culture of instant gratification often means people want a dog shipped to them within days – and it's typically from a puppy mill.

"And our largest here in Iowa has over a thousand breeding dogs, and those aren't including the puppies,” says Callison. “They're just constantly churning out puppies to supply that 'Amazon culture' of demand."

Puppy-mill dogs are usually sold to pet stores, where some animals in the past two years have developed a bacterial infection that can be passed to humans, inducing flu-like symptoms. Both Cedar Rapids and Iowa City have looked into banning puppy-mill purchases.

Journalist Rory Kress wrote the book "The Doggie in the Window: How One Dog Led Me from the Pet Store to the Factory Farm to Uncover the Truth of Where Puppies Really Come From," about the issue last year, after wondering about the origins of the dog she purchased from a puppy mill. She says her investigation turned up an obvious red flag.

"If you are not allowed to go onto their property and see where the dogs are kept, see how they live, walk around freely, spend time there, you're probably dealing with a puppy-miller,” says Kress. “Puppy-millers very frequently will offer to meet you in a neutral location."

While Callison advocates for adoption or rescue, she says you don't need to roll the dice on whether you'll get a healthy dog.

"If someone really, really wants a puppy, of course we always advocate for adoption through shelters or rescue,” says Callison. “But they can also go find a reputable breeder, and they can meet the parents of the dog and ask for those health records."

Calison notes that Iowa's puppy mills are concentrated in the northwest and southern parts of the state.

get more stories like this via email

The proposed Western Riverside County Wildlife Refuge is key habitat to the federally endangered Quino checkerspot butterfly. (Eric Porter/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)


HEMET, Calif. -- Public-lands groups are asking Congress to support the proposed Western Riverside County Wildlife Refuge, a 500,000-acre swath …

Social Issues

PRINCETON, Minn. -- President Joe Biden is expected to visit Minnesota today to tout passage of the new federal infrastructure bill. Those working …

Health and Wellness

AUGUSTA, Maine -- Advocates for access to mental-health services are holding a Behavioral Health Summit today at the Augusta Civic Center. They are …

Experts say eye exams do more than just help patients find the right prescription for glasses. (Dario Lo Presti/Adobestock)

Health and Wellness

CARSON CITY, Nev. -- Eye exams can help determine your risk of dying from COVID, according to experts, because optometrists are often the first …

Health and Wellness

FRANKFORT, Ky. -- In a few weeks, Kentucky lawmakers will convene the General Assembly, and health advocates are calling for new policies to address …

Conservationists say the Recovering America's Wildlife Act could support improvements to water quality in the Ozarks, including the Buffalo National River. (Adobe Stock)


ST. JOE, Ark. -- More than a decade of restoration efforts in a section of Northern Arkansas' Ozark National Forest have led to 40 new species of …

Social Issues

SANTA FE, N.M. -- The New Mexico Legislature will consider three possible redistricting maps for the House and Senate when it meets for a special …

Social Issues

HOUSTON, Texas -- Minority-owned businesses across the South are benefitting from a program designed to help them get back on their feet post-…


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021