Detroit Pet Stores Not Fined Or Shut Down By Michigan Agency After Violations Found


Michigan’s Department of Agriculture is responsible for ensuring the safety of animals, but many pet owners and animal organizations say that the agency is not doing their job.

Almost a quarter of the estimated 70 pet shops in southeast Michigan have been cited in the past four years for ill animals, putting animals in dirty and cramped cages, and selling pets that are sick or below the legal age. But state records show that none of these pet stores in violation have been shut down or fined.

Also, the Department of Agriculture is stopping inspections altogether, unless there are complaints that involve serious abuse or disease outbreaks.

Officials for the Department of Agriculture said that a smaller budget is a factor to the lack of inspections, and that they must focus more on monitoring deer and cattle populations for contagious diseases.

One store, Pollywood Pets, has received more than 30 complaints from various customers. Inspectors found animals in overcrowded cages, and sick and injured puppies, and overall the animals are neglected and dehydrated. Since 2003, nothing has been done about the condition of the pet store.

Another store, Family of Pets, has not had an inspection since five years ago even though there have been complaints about animals living in dirty, cramped cages.

Animal organizations question if the Michigan Department of Agriculture was ever well equipped to inspect pet stops.

“There needs to be a lot more protection for pets,” said Deborah Howard, president of the Companion Animal Protection Society, a national nonprofit that monitors pet stores.

Source: Detroit Free Press

(Thanks Carolyn & Maggie)

13 Responses to “Detroit Pet Stores Not Fined Or Shut Down By Michigan Agency After Violations Found”

  1. Cheryl says:

    hmm sounds like some animal rights & rescue groups need to start taking care of this on their own. Perhaps a lawsuit against the state of Michigan for not doing it’s job. Wouldn’t those fines be revenue for the state as well as a wake up call to the pet store owners? Perhaps a lawsuit against the pet stores. And what about protests outside of the stores?

  2. sandi says:

    If anyone is on the shelter needs list, you would see how backward Michigan and Ohio are when it comes to the treatment of pet store dogs, and more so shelter dogs.

    Oh, also Indiana, when will the so called northern red necks die off?????

  3. KAEfamily says:

    Do the governments of these states even care about their own human citizens’ welfare let alone pets?

  4. Joanne says:

    Rumor has it that KS is just as lax when dealing with pet stores and puppy mills. You’ve probably read about puppies from puppy mills here in the midwest going to stores on the west coast. Many complaints but nothing is done.

  5. straybaby says:

    “And what about protests outside of the stores?”

    didn’t they pass a law so that this couldn’t be done?

  6. The Lioness says:

    Getting a pet store inspected, let alone shut down or even fined is impossible or next to it.

    In my own area (Stefani probably has heard of the store I’m thinking of,) there is one that is really, really bad. There was a specific incident which my ex and I tried to remedy, partially by doing a direct rescue, which sadly failed.

    We contacted EVERYONE we could think of: Peta, the local news, even the national animal protection agencies.

    The latter two would only talk to us if another witness would come forward. (Unfortunately, that witness was a relative of the owner and was afraid of losing his job, even though he agreed with us.)

    PETA wanted us to do undercover filming of the abuses we were reporting, but in my state it’s illegal to tape anyone without their knowledge.

    I called a national organization once a long time ago about an unrelated issue, with a DIFFERENT kennel, and they told me it was the USDA that is supposed to oversee kennels nationally (don’t know about pet stores.) My thought in response to that was, “Oh. The animals are just SCREWED.” LOL!

    I think our gov’t has its head somewhere the sun doesn’t shine when it comes to animal welfare. (You could apply that nationally or on a state level.)

    Me? Cynical? Nah…much.

    I think the solution is for people like us to just continue to speak out and expose these places and people when they do bad things and to continue to educate others about proper animal welfare and animal rights.

    ~The Lioness

  7. sandi says:

    Mass and Rhode Island, have very strict laws not governing pet stores, also, the Vet that certifies a healthy puppy and thru research he has lied, he has a suspended license.

    Also, we have a lemon law,

    Oh, I know about Kansas, Missouri, Tennessee and the ones I really dislike intensely, AMISH AMISH, THEY ARE DISGUSTING,

    they are puppy millers as well as drug pushers

  8. stefani says:

    I’m not surprised. They let veterinarian Steven Ginsberg still practice after repeated suspensions, and admitting to hitting a dying dog with a broken back. Read below — wanna take your pet to him? Suspensions are over, and he’s in business.

    “With an open hand, I hit him on the side of his chest” . . . Ginsberg said, adding that the dog had a broken back, was in pain, and was unable to lie down to receive treatment.”;coll=7;,00.html


  9. stefani says:


    I don’t know if it is the same pet store, but I went to a small pet store in Gaithersburg when I was working there, and I almost cried at the conditions of the kittens — they were all sick, dirty, etc. I called animal control, reported it, went back a month later, it was still like that.

    I don’t know how a certain puppy store on Veirs Mill Road stays in business, the conditions those dogs are in. I guess since they have threatening signs up everywere saying VIDEO AND PHOTOS ARE NOT PERMITTED there is therefore no evidence, and no one cares. They are all on rubber grates with nothing soft to lie on, some in their own excrement, and clearly miserable.

    Oh, and many priced at $1,000.

    THank you for trying to do something. If you EVER need another witness for something like this, I am ALL OVER IT.

    And is video illegal too? I thought it was just audio recording.


  10. KAEfamily says:

    The sickest people are the ones who buys the puppies from these stores! They are the ones who should be jailed along side with these puppies mills/pet stores’ owners. After all we arrest drug pushers as well as buyers.

  11. Sharon says:

    It’s time for people to realize that these state and federal employees work for us. We pay their salaries and we elect the people to office who supervise them. If you don’t like the way things are fire the bums who are responsible for things being that way!

  12. Tanya says:

    KAE - these people aren’t sick, just misinformed. Untile i started watching Animal Planet, and reading blogs, i didn’t understand we had an overpopulation problem; didn’t understand what puppy mills were. I just wanted a cute kitten or dog and thought “oh, pet stores”.

    so the people buying from such stores, need education - that’s all. :-)

  13. Anonymous says:

    We purchase a pet from a so called caring ” CARING PET STORE” in Michigan metioned above . He was the cutest thing ever. We paid ALOT of money for him and in return are now facing mounds of medical bills !!! They gave us a certificate that said he had been checked out and had a clean bill of health. Little did we know until 2 days later that this was not the case. We purchased on a Thursday night and Saturday we took him to the vet. just as reassurance and were told he had a parasite , kennel cough amongst other things . Since then we discovered he has cherry eye in both eyes , a prolapsed ureathra , a skin condition and hip dysplasia. I would not ever dream of giving him back to that awful place or letting him go period. he is MY pet,companion and part of our family.I just think it’s awful that these so called ” caring pet places”are allowed to exsist.I will never buy another pet from somewhere like this again , BUT I am glad he is now in our care versus their’s or anyones elses who may have turned their back on him !!!! He will live in a good family environment and we will do whatever it takes to let him live the best life he can !!!

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