Puppy Factory Misery

This is the truth about that ‘puppy in the window’ that ACA don’t want you to see.

ACA Breeders is a puppy factory farm with hundreds of dogs kept in appalling conditions. 44 gallon drums are being used as kennels for many of the dogs (some stamped with the word ‘poison’). Some of the breeding dogs are kept in tiny caged enclosures on concrete floors with nowhere to sleep, except for a plastic drum with a hole cut in the bottom. These dogs are not loved pets they are breeding machines. They are used to make their owners rich through sales to pet stores, including the ACA Breeders pet shop in Wantirna.

My investigation into ACA Breeders received full page coverage in the Sunday Herald Sun (November 18, 2007) under the headline ‘How could they be so cruel?’ The article detailed the lives of terror, confinement and deprivation suffered by factory farmed dogs. We raided the property again in late November and discovered the same horrendous conditions, the same breeding dogs living in misery.

Intensive puppy breeding is the hidden cruelty behind the pet shop window. The general public are unaware of these puppy breeding farms where thousands of dogs across the State are kept imprisoned for life churning out litter after litter of puppies. Female dogs come into their first season at approximately 4-6 months of age and this is when many unscrupulous breeders mate them for their first litter, when they are still only puppies themselves.

Mother dogs are not given any rest or reprieve between litters and are kept in a continual cycle of pregnancy. Father dogs live their entire lives locked in pens with small runs, if they are lucky, and are only there to ‘service’ the female dogs. Both the mother and father dogs spend day after day after day ceaselessly pacing back and forth in small enclosures, their only way of coping with endless despair. These intelligent animals are never walked, socialised or given any love; they are simply breeding machines. Pups are weaned from their mums between 4 and 5 weeks of age and then transported to pet shops for display to the unsuspecting public. Pet shop owners depend on love at first sight when people, especially kids, see the adorable little puppies, as it prompts people to make an impulsive purchase. What the consumer can’t see is the puppy’s mother imprisoned miles away in her small pen awaiting repeated pregnancies.

In Australia we kill approximately 160,000 dogs every year because they are homeless, lost or abandoned. 350 unwanted dogs killed each and every day. The problems that cause animals to end up in shelters are preventable and the solutions are in our hands. Councils can have an impact on this issue by making the right decisions and taking the correct action. Councils are spending thousands of dollars on killing dogs in their pounds and shelters at the same time as they allow the breeding of more dogs by issuing permits for puppy farms to operate. It is time we get them to stop.

What you can do

URGENT ACTION NEEDED NOW! ACA breeders have been violating the Code of Practice for 14 years and the local Council have not bothered to enforce the law. E-mail the Wellington Shire Council Mayor and ask him to withdraw the permit for ACA Breeders because they are violating the Code of Practice. The Mayor’s e-mail address is darren.mcubbin@wellington.vic.gov.au Please also CC your e-mail to the Shire Field Services Co-ordinator: gary.jago@wellington.vic.gov.au

Educate everyone you know and ask them not to buy a puppy from a pet shop. If you or anyone you know wants a companion animal, please consider taking a dumped dog off death row. This is much better than paying these puppy farmers who abuse the animals that are innocently in their care.

Watch my slideshow of images taken at Learmonth puppy farm (shut down in 2005 after my 10 year campaign) and at ACA Breeders, the targets of my current campaign.

23 Responses to “Puppy Factory Misery”

  1. 1 Gillian Blair

    Dear Deborah Trantor,
    I would like to interview you on my radio show, “Green Connections”. Please could you send me an email, with your phone number. Many thanks for your attempts to make the world a better place.
    Gillian Blair
    (home) 03 55 676 273

  2. 2 Peng Cheah

    Hi Deborah,

    I have recently become aware of the horror of puppy mills, and was even more appalled to find that we have them here in Australia. I am residing near two puppy shops that matches the name of the shops owned by the runners of the puppy farms. May I enquire would these two shops be the exact ones that is in question? “Beautiful Puppies” at Springvale Rd, Nunawading. “ACA Breeders Kennels” at High Street Road, Wantirna South, with their website here: http://www.acabreederskennels.com.au/index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=1. If these two are in question, then we would certainly endeavour to petition our council to stop this revolting practice.


  3. 3 Sue


    You are doing a really good job bringing out in the open the cruelty, neglect and abuse of dogs and puppies at some “puppy farms”. This is terrible and should not be accepted by our community. These poor dogs and puppies have no choice and they are being exploited by greedy uncaring people who appear to not care for the welfare of these dogs but only for the profit they bring. It is appalling and needs to be stopped. I admire what you are doing.


  4. 4 madeleine

    i work in an animal shelter and just went out to a puppie farm and shut it down it is disgusting

  5. 5 Gillian Blair

    Dear Deborah,

    How is the campaign progressing about shutting down the cruel puppy farms? Please could you let me know all the areas where these farms are, and I will get my friends to write to the local municipalities and the RSPCA.
    You are very welcome to be on my show again. We could also talk about duck shooting and other issues if you like.
    Kind regards,
    Gillian Blair 55 676 273

  6. 6 Rebecca Clay

    Hi i would like to take part in this. as i have just started volunteering in the rspca. but if anyone needs some helpp. im more then happy to help. as i have soved some cruelty thats happend to animals. im only 17 by the way but im very very mature and seriouse about animals and cruelty.

  7. 7 S Pearce

    Hi please keep me informed on your progress with the campaign. I have sent an email as requested, and would like to be updated, and informed of anything else that may help bring a stop to this disgusting cruelty

  8. 8 Tammy & Jess & Alex

    This is shocking this is animal cruelty imagine if u were them how would u feel if you were put in a small cage and then had to breed.
    We would love to help we are only 13 but we care about this issue.
    Animal Cruelty is a rising issue in todays world and the conditions that these puppies are living in are just terrible. Dont you care about theese animals wat did they eva do to you

  9. 9 kat fish grub

    this is so horrible!!!

  10. 10 kattti,izzie,tay

    this is absolutely appaling. i cant believe that these poor dogs are kept in conditions like these. they have feelings to u no. i cANT BELIEVE THAT PEOPLE ACTUALLY DO THIS TO MAKE THEMSELVES RICH I MEAN IF THOSE PEOPLE HAD A HEART THEY WOULD REALISE THAT THIS IS INDISPICABLE AND SHOULD BE STOPPED IMMEADIATELY!!! at least there are somepeople out there who care about he treatment of these pups.
    thanku 4 doin everytin u can to stop puppy farms and the re-opening of them


  11. 11 rehina

    I dont understand how this is legally allowed to continue??? Who makes the rules for this??? It is absolutely appalling and something needs to be done about it. No use in us saying how terrible it is, something like this needs active petitioning or something along those lines!!! What can be done???

  12. 12 debra

    Thanks Rehina,
    Unfortunately this is Government sanctioned cruelty. Local Government get a kickback from puppy farmers by way of dog registrations and business registration annually, therefore they have no interest in enforcing the code of practice.
    You need to write to your local MP and tell them how you feel. The most important and most powerful way you can help these dogs is to spread the word, NEVER BUY AN ANIMAL FROM A PET SHOP!

  13. 13 Lena

    I admire you for standing up for these innocent and vulnerable creatures. You are giving them a voice and that is what needs to be done to shut these industry giants down for good.
    You are right-shops depend on consumer demand, the public can use their purchasing power to make these sick people bankrupt and therefore not able to cruelly influence these poor animals’ lives.
    When I saw the pictures here it made me feel awful-I own a Cavilier myself and he looks just like the one being hugged by a volunteer.
    Thankyou so much and keep up the great work!

  14. 14 Jess

    Hey Debra,

    I am currently doing an animal welfare report for my university on puppy mills and the dog meat industry. These pictures have distressed me so much I can feel the goosbumps everywhere. I regret to say I live close to the Learmonth Farm and I never knew on the cruetly that was so close to my life. I’m just glad someone is finally doing something. If you have any other additional photos available they would be much appreciated. I attend the Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga, it’s about time people up here knew about puppy mills too!!

    Kind Regards

    Keep up the good work!!!

  15. 15 Gillian

    I had never heard of puppy farms until I bought my puppy from Pets Paradise at Westfield Doncaster. I had noticed that other dog owners I have met were silent when I told them this (everyone asks, too). I’m glad I know now because it’s very wrong. At 6 months, my puppy is a wonderful little dog – healthy, happy, affectionate – and a much-loved member of our family. I wouldn’t change him for the world, but I do hope his parents are ok, I’ll never know.

  16. 16 shaylea, emily, caitlin, maddy, rachelle, jess and ali

    this is horrible. it’s sad to think that people treat animals like this. me and my friends would like to help but were all 14 or under. i do hope something gets done soon i can’t imagine animals living in these poor conditions for much longer.

    do the right thing and ban puppy farms!

  17. 17 Angela

    Dear Debra,

    Thank you for having such an informative website on the horrors of puppy farming! I really only became aware of this issue in the last few days as I was interested in purchasing a Labrador puppy from a petshop here in Hobart. Initially, when inquiring about the puppy, I was only interested in checking for dysplasia and then I read something on Dogzonline about puppy farming. I Googled puppy farming and found your website. I am horrified that puppy farming occurs here in Australia – I thought we were supposed to be the caring country? I am now not willing to buy the puppy, no matter how much he pulls at my heart strings because I don’t want to contribute in anyway towards the profits of the heartless monsters who treat animals in this way. I even told the workers at the pet shop that the reason why I would not purchase the puppy (and he is super cute too) was because they could not provide me with the name of the breeder and the risk that he was puppy farmed was too high (he was bred in Melbourne).

    I don’t understand how these people could sleep at night – I thought dogs were supposed to be man’s best friend, not man’s slave to be abused and neglected!

    Thank you again for such an informative website!

  18. 18 Jennifer

    Dear Debra,

    I am horrified at the whole concept of puppy farming, which I only discovered today when researching where to get a puppy.

    I have not been able to find any breeders in the ACT of small dogs (looking for a Pugalier) and was going to start looking in pet stores when I saw your website.

    Could you please give some advice on finding a breeder? Many thanks.

  19. 19 debra

    Hi Jennifer
    There is a great rescue group that I am sure will be able to help you find your pugalier

  20. 20 Rhian

    Hi,I’m a college student studying my second year of animal care. I’m doing work on Puppy Farming and how its affecting the industry. I think its a fantactic thing for people to try and stop Puppy Farms. I’m glad that something is getting done about it 🙂

  21. 21 wendy marea dawson

    hi debra.just listened to an abc radio program on the horrors of puppy farms and want to congratulate you on your brave and nerve-racking work. appalling cruelty such as this, particularly when it is capable of being controlled, is a damning testimony to the greed of some people. NEVER BUY PUPPIES IN A PET SHOP is my new mantra.

  22. 22 Anonymous

    THIS MAKES ME SICK! it is absolutely disgusting. They need to be SHUT DOWN IMMEDIATELY!

  23. 23 pippa

    Debra i just want to say what a marvelous job you are doing.
    Puppy Farms are disgusting and they should be shut down!
    I am doing my argumentative at school on puppy farms.
    The people that run these puppy farms should be euthanaised

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