Missouri Department of Agriculture Turning a
Blind Eye to Animal Cruelty

Sick & Injured Dogs Being Ignored by MDA
The Canine Cruelty Prevention Act (CCPA) was passed in 2011 and was intended to close down cruel and inhumane dog breeders. This new law greatly enhanced standards of care and mandated veterinary care for sick and injured dogs. The CCPA also granted new authority to the Attorney General to prosecute inhumane breeders.

After its passage, the Missouri Department of Agriculture (MDA) acted quickly and referred numerous disreputable dog breeders to the Attorney General's office for criminal and civil proceedings. This resulted in successful legal action against multiple dog breeders. Recognizing that there were now consequences for their malfeasance and realizing that MDA was serious about enforcing humane laws, literally hundreds of Missouri puppy millers voluntarily shut down their dog breeding operations.

Unfortunately, under the Greitens' administration, MDA decided to turn a blind eye to cruel and unscrupulous dog breeders despite the severity of the violations and the number of dogs suffering from a lack of veterinary care. Chris Chinn, who was appointed Director of Agriculture by Governor Greitens, has steadfastly refused to refer substandard dog breeders to the Attorney General's Office for legal action.

Dog at a breeding facility that MDA has allowed to operate in spite of documented lack of veterinary care for 5 years in a row
The Alliance presented a list of 30 of some of the worst dog breeders in the state to MDA's Director Chinn along with a summary of violations documented on both MDA and USDA inspection reports. These are just some of the findings that federal and state inspectors have documented at various licensed dog breeding facilities across the state:

  • Mounds of feces 10 inches high
  • Dogs seeking moisture licking at solid blocks of ice
  • More than 30 dogs were found underweight, sick or injured; some limping or had open wounds
  • At another facility 23 dogs were found badly in need of veterinary care - some were very thin and living in "extremely filthy conditions"
  • Dogs with open wounds exposing bone
  • Dogs shivering in the cold
  • Walls and doors of kennel smeared with feces, whelping building smelled so bad that inspector felt a burning and stinging sensation to the eyes and nasal cavity
  • Repeatedly refusing to allow inspectors access to the kennel and subsequently lost USDA license when sick and injured dogs were discovered but MDA continues to license this breeder
  • Poodle lying on her side unable to rise covered in blood; Shar-pei injured with severe lacerations
  • Conditions so filthy that white dogs appeared to be brown
  • Several dogs extremely thin - one dog so thin that she had no muscle mass and all of her bones were prominent
  • Mother dog with puppies in cage so small she could not stand
  • Dogs excessively matted, dogs with open wounds infested with live maggots
  • Underweight, sick and injured dogs documented for 5 straight years at one facility
  • Malnourished mother dog with loss of muscle mass who was trying to nurse her puppies
  • Refusal to provide veterinary care even when instructed to do so by MDA
Schnauzer so badly matted and infected with lice that dog is no longer recognizable
At one facility, state inspectors reported serious veterinary care problems for ELEVEN straight years. At another facility, the breeder was fined $25,000 and permanently banned from breeding by USDA yet MDA allows her to operate without any repercussions even after she threatened a state veterinarian inspector with a gun. Instead of reporting this breeder, along with numerous other inhumane breeders to the Attorney Genera'ls Office for legal action, Director Chinn responded to the Alliance's concerns by stating that "it's not our business to put breeders out of business...they are our clients."
MDA Director Chinn: "It is not our business to put breeders out of business"
The Alliance in response has reached out to the Legislature in the hopes of pressuring the Department to initiate legal proceedings against these unscrupulous breeders. In addition, we have reached out to the media in the hopes of bringing greater attention to MDA's malfeasance. Link to Article

We are also reaching out to our new Governor in an effort to address this concern. We have already spoken with Attorney General Josh Hawley to encourage him to have his office take direct action against unscrupulous breeders without a formal referral from the MDA.

Our efforts have made some headway as we recently learned that MDA has finally referred one of the worst breeders to the Attorney General's Office for legal action. You can be assured that the Alliance will continue to aggressively fight to close down all of the inhumane dog breeders in the state. We will keep you apprised of our efforts and let you know how and when you can assist us in this effort going forward. Stay tuned!
Over the past two years multiple dogs found underweight, sick or injured at this MDA licensed facility