The Horrors of Puppy Mills

Available Pets


Cullen Gigi Jacques Macey Maurice
Bernard Cullen Gigi Jacques Macey Maurice

On January 31st, Placing Paws rescued a bunch of dogs from two different puppy mills in Missouri. A puppy mill is a commercial breeding facility where puppies are mass produced for profit without regard for the health or well being of the puppies or the breeder dogs. The mills house their dogs in deplorable conditions, they are fed inadequate food and seldom if ever receive veterinary care. The breeding dogs are never allowed outside of their cages. They are forced to live in wire bottomed cages 24 hours per day where they have to eat, sleep and go potty. There are an estimated 4,000 puppy mills in the U.S. that produce more than half a million puppies a year. When the puppy mill is done with their breeding dogs, they will either euthanize them or sell them at auction. The lucky ones get rescued and get a second chance at a happy life.
Bernard, Jacques, Cullen, Maurice, Macey and GiGi arrived on Sunday night in horrible condition . . .

The recent expenses incurred with these puppy mill dogs are a huge financial burden on a small organization like Placing Paws. It could greatly jeopardize the number of dogs that we will be able to save in 2010. We know that in the current economic times, it can be very hard to make a large donation. Please know that donations of any size WILL make a difference. We also have created many other ideas and opportunities for you to help.  If we all pull together and help out just a little, it will help out a lot and continue to allow us to save more animals. This is especially needed in these difficult times because the animals need us now more than ever.

How can you help?

  • Make a monetary donation and ask your company for a match. Many companies offer this and it is a great way to increase your contribution.
    Click for more details
  • Donate a raffle item. Raffle items are a great Fund Raising opportunity for Placing Paws. Items of any size and value are welcome.
    Think big and ask your employer.
    Ask stores and places of service that you frequent if they would like to
    donate an item, service or gift certificate to raffle.
    Click for more ideas.
  • Come to our Spring Shopping Boutique
    Saturday May 1
    , 2010 3-6 pm.
    Come Shop for Mom, Yourself or Your Special Someone. Just in time for Mother's Day or simply sprucing up for spring!
    Click for more info.
  • Group Fund Raising Ideas. Schools, Scout Troops, Church Groups, etc, are often looking for a local service project to serve the community. This is great way to help raise money and goods for Placing Paws.
    Click for more ideas and details
  • Host a Jewelry or Web Party or shop online at Nikki Vineyard of Vineyard Fashions will donate 20% of the proceeds to Placing Paws.
    Click here for more details
  • Join us for a Wine Tasting at Viva La Vine's brand new Wine Bar June 1. (more details to follow)


The Follow up

The first step was to shave all of the mats off of their bodies and wash the stains from years of living in their own urine and feces.

One by one their medical issues were addressed; ear infections, a heart murmur and a broken jaw just to start.  All six required dentals to remove the filth from many years of unhealthy living; each losing multiple teeth. They each went in to foster homes to begin their emotional healing and get ready for adoption.

Thanks to all that helped and the outpouring of support for the puppy mill dogs.  They are all doing well.  We are happy to report that Bernard, Gigi, Macy, Jacques and Maurice have all found their forever homes and have started their new lives. Cullen is still waiting for his forever home.  Cullen is a very sweet lovable guy that we are confident will find his forever home soon.  If you or someone you know might be interested in adopting Cullen please contact us at
      It was a long and hard journey, but it was well worth it and they are all making it into the “hearts of their forever homes.”  A big thank you goes to Care Animal Hospital and Shear Paradise Pet Salon.  They were instrumental in helping with the transformations. 

Fosters Tales


Absolute Good and Pure Evil

They all arrived matted hair, rotting teeth, filthy and dangerously underweight. Living in cages with no other purpose on earth than to breed to make cute little fluffy white mixed breed puppies to be sold for big money. They are not loved, they are not held, they are not played with, they are not groomed, they are not given basic medical care, some are not even fed, and they are not cherished. When they are all  used up they are left to die. The lucky ones are rescued. Whoever did this is the embodiment of pure evil.
 We met Gigi after she had been cleaned up, teeth fixed, and spayed. She is a bag of bones,   feet  stained brown from standing in urine, feces and filth day after day. She is afraid to be left alone, she is not house broken. She runs around in circles and seems genuinely shocked at the size of the world outside of her little kennel.
 Within days she has gained weight, she is making an effort to remember to wait to go outside to toilet. She responds to her new name. She is a smart little thing. But most important, when she sees us her little tail wags and her eyes sparkle. She is optimistic. She is the embodiment of absolute good.
 My husband and I are accidental foster parents. Our daughter went on vacation and left us with her dogs and with the blessing of Placing Paws, she left us with Gigi. We are both thankful for the opportunity to help this little soul recover and start her journey into a fun loving, well cared for life.

Macey (now Bon Bon)

When I look at my own two healthy dogs with their shiny coats, wagging tails and happy eyes it made me realize how a pets life is a luck of the draw. Our dogs were fortunate to find a home in which they are treated as part of the family. They get regular walks, loving words spoken to them and many, many tummy rubs. On the other hand there are those unfortunate dogs, that by no wrong doing have endured lives of misery which include malnutrition, infections, and a life I wouldn't wish upon this earth's worst criminals. Dogs are innately good and compassionate and yet people with cruel intentions treat them as property to be abused for their own monetary gain and then disposed of. Yet even after years of this hardship our foster dog, Bon-Bon, within two days was able to exhibit trust for human beings. We are the ones that should be thanking her for coming into our lives. Watching her heal physically and emotionally has given us a new found respect for the enormous hearts that are in their little bodies. She makes us laugh and smile and yet our hearts break for the countless one's out there that aren't going to be as lucky as she has to come out alive. She needs love and we need her. Placing Paws makes it possible for us to help save the life of a dog without the financial burden that would otherwise prevent us for being able to.


The first night they arrived we were very concerned about the health of all six dogs.  That turned out to be the least of our concerns. Physical ailments can be repaired; mental ailments are not so easily fixed.  Maurice stood out to me as the one that needed the most help emotionally.  When he was placed in his crate at the vet, he began to scream and try to chew his way out of the crate.  His nose and paws were already raw and bloody from years of trying to escape from his cage.  Something in his scream drew me to him.  I approached his crate and he pawed at the door as if to say “please take me out”.  I opened the crate door and put my hand on him.  He immediately settled down.  I could feel his entire body relax.  I took him out of the crate and held him; he melted in to my body.  Tears were coming to my eyes as I realized that this was probably the most human contact he had his entire life.  Someone turned to me and said “so is he going to your house?”  He wasn’t, a wonderful foster had already been lined up for him.  (Maybe fate was foreshadowing something)  A few days later, after he had been groomed, neutered and dental completed he was delivered to his foster family.  Maurice had a hard time adjusting and was not getting along with the resident dogs in the house.  Maurice was returned by the foster and again had to stay at the vet.  A couple of days later I decided that he needed a break from the cage and I would bring him to my house for the afternoon.  I brought him to my house and set him on the couch next to me; he immediately curled up and went to sleep.  I realized that what he needed was nothing but time.  Maurice just wanted to be near me.  He needed time to be allowed to figure out that he was a dog. I decided to let him stay with me.  The first 3 weeks he basically slept 24/7.  I had to carry Maurice everywhere.  He had to be lifted on to the couch, carried outside (during the bitterest cold part of the winter), carried up and down the stairs; he had to be carried everywhere. I wonder now if he made me do that so that he would get attention.  Little by little Maurice decided that he wanted to do things on his own.   I placed a step in front of the couch so he could get up on his own; he was able to get up, however, it took a little more time for him to figure out how to get down.  As the weeks went by Maurice began to go outside on his own and showed me that he was able to do things on his own. Don’t get me wrong, Maurice was still my shadow.     One thing that never changed was Maurice’s love of people.  Most Puppy Mill dogs are afraid of people and would prefer to be in the company of other dogs. Maurice was the complete opposite; he loved people.  When he sees someone new his little tail wiggles so hard that his entire body shakes.  Amazing, a dog that probably never had any positive contact from humans, trusted them so much.
A couple of months later a wonderful couple fell in love with him.  Maurice is about to start his new life as a real dog, not a piece of property kept in a cage.  What Maurice taught me was that dogs are very resilient and sometimes doing “nothing” is the best therapy.  We are always trying to evaluate our dogs and figure out what we need to do to help them; sometimes just letting them be a dog is what they need. 


Watch for upcoming events

Two Great Pet
Products For Sale

Click Here To See How
to Order these
Great Products

Mary Kay representative
Angie Lullo will donate 10% of sales to Placing Paws. You must mention Shear Paradise Pet Salon when ordering.
Contact Angie at: 847-975-6712.
Catalog's available at Shear Paradise.

Please note:
not all of our dogs will be at all of the meet and greet events. If you are interested in meeting a particular dog, please email us at to find out if that dog will be there

Do you need assistance with pet vaccinations?
The Lake County Health Dept. / Community Health Center periodically provides low-cost pet vaccination clinics.
Click here for more information.

Thank You!

Thank you to all that showed up to both Halloween Partys Oct 29th & 30th. Pictures from the events can be seen here:
Oct. 29th Central Bark

Oct 30th K-9 Playtime

A Big Thank You to all that showed up at Egg Harbor On Aug. 5th, 2011 to "Dine And Share" and helped raise money for Ruby's medical care.

A huge THANK YOU to Egg Harbor Cafe in Libertyville and all those that came out on May 1st to help support Jesse and contribute to her surgeries. A big thank you also goes out to her wonderful foster family for taking such great care of her and showing her what love really is.

Jesse is an adorable 5 month old lab mix. She was found along with her brothers in a school yard on a rainy day in Southeast Mousouri. Jesse was found with a injured leg. She had surgery in an attempt to save her leg, but unfortunately, the damage was too extensive and her leg will had to be removed.

Placing Paws would like to thank the following business for hosting us for various events:

Central Bark Grayslake for hosting a Halloween benefit for us on Oct. 30

Egg Harbor Cafe in Libertyville for opening up for us for dinner on Sept. 21

Vernon Hills Athletic Center for allowing us to have a meet and greet with all of our adoptable animals there September 11.

K-9 Playtime for various events.

Donations Needed

Placing Paws is always in need
of financial contributions to help
cover medical expenses.
Other items that are
always needed are:
Gas cards, blankets,
crates, toys, Purina One
dog and cat food,
collars, leashes,
dog and cat shampoo,
Frontline & Heartguard.
If you are able to help
please contact us at

Kids 4 Paws

Kids4Paws is for the
youth rescue volunteers
(ages 10-17) of Placing Paws. 
Youth volunteers help with
public awareness campaigns
in Lake County, Illinois
(eg. school presentations), fundraisers, adoption events, and some hands-on animal care as well as participate in fun and educational field trips
(visiting other rescues,
meeting professionals who
work with animals, etc.).
If you are intersted in joining
the Kids 4 Paws Club
Please email us at:

Kids 4 Paws members enjoyed an afternoon bowling April 11.

Kids 4 Paws members enjoy a day at the Hooved Animal Rescue & Protection Society