Where To Get a Puppy


Are you getting a new dog or thinking about it? We’re so excited for you and we know you’ll give your new companion a great, loving home.

Once you’ve decided you’re ready for a dog, the next big decision is where to find this lifelong family member. You’ll want to make sure to NOT get an animal from a puppy mill and that’s not always easy to recognize.

Sadly, some places that seem like great puppy sources may not be, but if you follow our top puppy-buying tips, you’ll be far more likely to secure a healthy, well-socialized dog who doesn’t drain your emotions or your wallet.

Consider Adoption First

Adopting a dog who needs a home is one of the best things you’ll ever do. Your local animal shelter or rescue organization can help you find the right match for your family. Whether you want a puppy or a more mature dog, a purebred, hybrid or one-of-a-kind mixed breed dog, shelters or rescue organizations have the best selection of animals anywhere. And by opting to adopt, you will be saving a life. Visit a website like Petfinder to find a database of animals looking for a home in your area.
A photo of 3 puppies laying together
A photo of a puppy in a crate

Don’t Get a Puppy From a Pet Store

Despite what they may tell you, most pet stores do sell puppy mill puppies. Unless the store is “puppy-friendly” by sourcing homeless pups from local animal shelters, you have to be very careful about a pet store’s link to puppy mills.

Don’t Believe Promises That Puppies Are “Home-Raised” or “Family-Raised”

Many puppy millers pose as small family breeders online and in newspaper and magazine ads. We have often helped local authorities in the rescue of puppy mill dogs. In almost all cases, the puppy mills sold puppies via the internet using legitimate-looking ads or websites that made it look like the dogs came from somewhere happy and beautiful—claims that couldn’t have been further from the truth.
A photo of two scared puppies in a crate
A photo of a curious puppy in a rusty crate

Avoid the Temptation To “Rescue” a Puppy Mill Dog by Buying Them

Unfortunately, that just opens up space for another puppy mill puppy and puts money into the pockets of the puppy mill industry. The money you spend goes right back to the puppy mill operator, ensuring they will continue breeding and treating dogs inhumanely. If you see someone keeping puppies in poor conditions, alert your local animal control authorities instead of buying the animal.

Do Your Part: Pledge To Help Stop Puppy Mills!

Choose not to buy your next pet from a pet store or internet site and refuse to buy supplies from any pet store or internet site that sells puppies.
A photo of a litter of puppies

Join Us

Help rescue and protect animals!

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A photo of the trauma rehabilitation center

Care and Rehabilitation Centre

Animals have been rescued from the dog meat trade, puppy mills and other situations of cruelty and neglect.

Image of 3 puppies from a puppy mill being held by an FHSI employee

Puppy Mills

Puppy mills remain a widespread, significant animal abuse and cruelty problem in Canada and around the world.
A photo of a dog being walked by an FHSI employee

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The choice to spay or neuter your pet may be one of the most important decisions you make impacting their long-term health—and your wallet!