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Humane Society to Celebs: It Ain't Puppy Love

12/11/2007 4:56 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

UPDATE: The L.A. Department of Animal Regulations has just shut down Pets of Bel Air because we're told three of the store's permits have expired. Lt. Troy Boswell tells TMZ the store's permit to sell live animals has been expired for three and a half years (yikes!). We're also told the Department has checked out all the animals currently in the store and they all seem to be in good health. A worker at the pet store insists they've done nothing wrong.

The pet store has 48 hours to renew their permits.

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) today revealed undercover footage linking a popular pet store-to-the-stars with a puppy mill that supplies them. Oh the humane-ity!
Britney, Paris, Puppies
The HSUS alleges that Pets of Bel Air -- a trendy pet shop that boasts Paris Hilton, Denise Richards, Demi Moore, Britney Spears and Robin Williams among its clientele, who spend as much as $2,400 for a Maltese -- gets their puppies from puppy mills. In fact, TMZ also spotted Britney shopping there just this past weekend.

Pets of Bel Air told HSUS investigators they don't get their puppies from puppy mills, but the HSUS says that simply not the dogs'-honest truth. They allege the shop buys from mills in Kansas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Iowa and Missouri. Undercover footage shot by the HSUS at one such puppy mill shows cage after cage of little dogs locked up and going "cage crazy." Not a pretty sight.

Puppy mills sell dogs who live their entire lives in cages and are continually bred for years, without human companionship and with little hope of ever becoming part of a family.

Calls to the Pets of Bel Air shop were not immediately returned.

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warrior caliber    

To those who think adopting is the ONLY solution and that purebreds arent necessary, some people are interested in having a dog for more than just a house hold companion. A lot of people want to get into breeding and showing dogs and because they like a particular breed and there is nothing wrong with that, but people interested in buying for breeeding/showing purposes should definately research before they make a purchase. Most pure bred dogs with a solid background will run at least$1000 and the better the pedigree, the more youre going to put out in cash to the breeder. The problem with some pet stores is that they falsify AKC papers to cover up where their dogs came from. There is nothing wrong with PAYING for a dog as long as it comes from a reputable breeder. Everyone has personal preference and as much research should be done on a breed, breeder AND animal rescue as possible. Not all shelters put dogs down and not all shelters take good care of the animals in their care. Most shelters depend on donations as well in order to keep animals alive, fed and cared for. It's a shame, but it's the truth.

2510 days ago


#15, you need to look @ the video again, they did NOT steal the puppies. Brit was going to buy 2 puppies for her boys but decided not to, no where does it show she stole them. I guarantee you, if she stole the puppy, it would be all over the net. Look how the lighter was all over the net & it clearly showed she paid for it. JMO.

2510 days ago


The Humane Society cares a lot more about animals than PETA.

2510 days ago


I have a male & a female Chihuahua mix, from the same litter. The male is mostly black, & the female is mostly tan. I adopted them from a rescue shelter at 8 weeks old.
The little girl only weighed 2lbs, & her brother weighed 4lbs. Now they weigh 9lbs & 12lbs, and will be 2 yrs old in January.

I was concerned when Britney adopted the yorkie, (London), because I had been advised by the shelter that their small dogs couldn't be adopted by ppls with small children in the home. They told me many small dogs are accidentially injured or killed by small children. I remember that London's front leg was injured when Brittney still had custody of the kids.

I don't know if that's what happened to London, but that's another reason to adopt from a shelter who's concerned about the animal's welfare as opposed to adopting from a pet store, who's only concern is profit.

Btw, the "suggested donation" for each of them was $500.00, but that $1,000.00 went to help all the other shelter animals, and is tax deductible.

Oh, and I had them both "fixed" when they came of age. No incest in THIS family!

2510 days ago


#21 Lori

My bad, SPCA puts animals down, whatever, I have along with many others donated to HSUS and SPCA, those two orgs do nothing but show the bad and send their pitiful letters out asking for money that goes to their paychecks. Then every once in a while we here about a story like this and whatever becomes of it?

I have two pets that I got through a breeder, not a mill. People should go through a reputable breeder that they can actually visit or adopt a pet.

Have a great day

2510 days ago


it makes me so sad to hear this. i have two cavalier king charles spaniels that after a lot of investigating may have come from a puppy mill as well. luckily they are healthy and the most loving and sweet friends my boyfriend and i could have.


2510 days ago


I went to look for a puppy at a shelter. They didnt help me even when I was asking all sorts of questions about the dogs. It was like they didnt want the dogs adopted. The poodle rescue place I went to along with the boxer rescue place charged 250 and up MINIMUM for a dog or puppy. All I wanted was a small dog/puppy for my daughter. I finally found one in craigslist. went to the home and it was not a puppy mill. they do exist but here in Houston it is hard to get a dog from a rescue org without paying an arm and a leg. The poodle place had tons or dogs from mills old and young. They could have let me buy one and give it a good home for way less.

2510 days ago


Consider this when you think about why puppy mills like to stay in business.
Each puppy sells for $2400.00 each. And if you sell at least 6 puppies a month it comes to $14.000. a month x 12 mos = $172.000.00 a year. So, why wouldn't these pet shops want to stay in business. I am sure that the mills who sell their puppies get a certain amount when they sell them to the pet shops. Who knows how much they sell they for.
And it's easy to get a purebreed from a legit breeder and breed it for as long as possible.
They are in it for the money and that is the bottom line.
People want a puppy and around this time of the year it makes it easier for these mills. Children and adults want a puppy for Christmas. And when they are in demand it makes it tuff. If you want a puppy go to a breeder in your area. Visit the breeder and ask to see the Sire and the Dame ( mom and dad) and the breeding conditions that they come from. You want puppies that are social and are loved and handles by the breeder so that the puppy does not have a hard time. Research if you must with online sources that can tell you if the breeder has complaints, And if you only get a dog or cat because your children beg you for it and you can't take care of it, don't get one.

2510 days ago


I do not know if this is true...i was once told that some puppy mills give their "unsellable" pups to dog fighters who use them as bait. As i not know if true. Puppy mills should be outlawed.

2510 days ago

Party 'till you die!    


2510 days ago

"who live their entire lives in cages and are continually bred for years, without human companionship and with little hope of ever becoming part of a family."

so what's different about the way some of these celebs are raised?

seriously, good for you TMZ. you actually can be useful.

2510 days ago


#32...surprised to hear that...the rescue leagues here only charge the amount of having the pet spayed or neutered (60-70$). Did you try looking for a non-profit shelter that relies solely on donations?

2510 days ago


The Humane Society of the United States is full of crap!
They Allege, but have no proof.
Puppy mills are wrong but the Humane society does not believe we should have pets at all!
Take care when you buy pets but do not believe the Humane society they are just going after the MONEY!!

That said the best place to get a great dog or cat is from that nice family in the Wall Mart parking lot.
Thats how I got my Black Lab Tarbaby.

2510 days ago

Party 'till you die!    

Sorry, went thru! Good for TMZ for exposing two of the worst pet owners out there. Pets are not fashion accessories and play toys to be disposed of like cheap (stolen) lighters! When was the last time you saw either of them walking adult, older animals? Get tired of one, replace it for another!

2510 days ago


I don't understand why most celebrities continue to shop for their dogs at pet shops - aka puppy mills? Don't they know that puppies there are usually from mills - thus the pricey tag? And the whole cross breed thing - maltese / poodles and the like - don't we know that we are creating dogs that have health risks to begin with and doubling the risk of them not being healthy by breeding outside of their bloodline? The whole point of breeding dog is to BETTER THE BREED! Not see how many issues we can combine into one dog JUST BECAUSE THEY MIGHT BE CUTE! Since Ms. Brit is willing to drive anywhere (but not well), why doesn't she drive to a dog show and find a reputable breeder to buy from? She certainly has the $$$ to do so! Try, Brit - to find a AKC show near you!

2510 days ago
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