News23ABC In-Depth


Dog breeders selling dogs through social platforms and raising issues for shelters

Dog in Animal Shelter
Posted at 4:38 PM, Dec 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-16 12:08:35-05

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — As selling dogs through platforms like the Facebook marketplace is prohibited, many are going another route, selling puppies under listings for dog food or crates creating a problem for local shelters.

The local rescues here are taking dogs from the shelters that are already at capacity as well as from the streets and are trying to send them out of the county to places where dog overpopulation is not an issue. But they said they cannot keep up with breeders putting more dogs into the community which they said often have health problems.

“We see a lot of cleft pallets, and cleft lip puppies that a lot of it is genetically not sound breeding, but if people are still willing to pay a few hundred dollars for the dogs that they want, then people are still going to sell them.” Dawn Romero, rescue coordinator, Unity K9 Express Rescue.


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Mallory Sofastaii, WMAR
9:04 AM, Dec 16, 2021

Romero a local dog rescuer said the biggest concern is the dogs that are being bred whether that is accidental from family dogs or intentional from those trying to profit, are not getting their vaccines and can develop health problems. She said they see posts all the time from people alerting them of breeders selling on Facebook marketplace or Nextdoor.

This vendor 23ABC reached out to said the puppies he is selling are dewormed and vaccinated but Romero argues you don’t know if that is true or if the procedure was done properly.

“There is nothing we can do to stop them right now, so my point of view is if you are selling your puppies, please get them vaccinated so at least when they end up on the shelter in a few months, they are not going to get sick,” said Romero.

Romero said the best solution would be to have mandatory spaying and neutering and licenses and permits for people selling puppies to have more regulation on the situation.

“Our shelters are trying to be no-kill but how can they do that when they have constant every single day, dozens of dogs coming in, it is not attainable at this point but if we can get dogs to stop breeding their dogs. Whether it is intentional then we can maybe get our footing and be more proactive instead of reactive,” Sundee Martineau, founder of Bakersfield Boxers and Bullies Rescue.

Martineau said there are many cities and counties in California with spaying and neutering as well as breeding permit programs in place where you can see the difference in shelter capacity.

In Kern County, Nick Cullen for the Kern County Animal Control Center said there are permit requirements that limit to buying or breeding to one litter per year.

But Martineau argues this is not enough as they don't see repercussions for not following the permit.

“The consequence to continuing to breed your dogs without that permit, then you need to be fined for that and they need to find a way to enforce that fine, because right now they are like right now it is not something we can really enforce it,” said Martineau.

Martineau added they have gone to the county and city to demand stricter ordinances be put in place and notes this does not mean all dogs would be spayed and neutered but rather be taken on a case-to-case basis in hopes of ending breeding malpractices and hoarding cases in our area.

Which dog breeds end up in shelters the most?

According to the pet company, Chewy, the American Pit Bull Terrier is number one:

American Pit Bull Terrier

The dog is popular but is also highly abused.

Two is the Labrador Retriever:

Lbrador Retriever

Since the dog is very popular, it can lead to overbreeding.

Three is the German Shepherd:

German Shepherd

Four is Dachshund:


And five is the Jack Russell Terrier:

Jack Russell Terrier

Whose popularity skyrocketed after the TV show "Frasier: which featured a dog named Eddie.