From: Gayle B. Goetzman-Stolpa



Dear Winona County Commissioners, I vote to stop permits allowing further building of multiple breeding facilities, publicly known as puppy mills. Once these huge breeding areas are approved or even monitored, whether chicken, hog or dairy cattle with many non-compliances, they are rarely ever shut down. 

As a young 10-year-old farm girl, I well understood the time, education, and energy it took to socialize a family animal. Many of us have experienced that joy. We know that more than one or two puppies can be a challenge. My mother purchased a brown, terrier-mix, five-year-old male dog we named Tony from a puppy mill that no longer valued him. We were told to keep him in a kennel cage because he was blind in one eye and going blind in the other. He was afraid to come out into the light because he wasn’t used to it and may get lost. When we held him, he was frightened and shaking. He’d tremble and shiver when we spoke to him but he never growled or bit. Tony never became completely socialized. This dog had limited exercise and mental, physical, and behavioral problems that lasted his entire short lifetime. Now, consider what the female dogs endure when all their worth is how many sellable puppies they are forced to produce during each and every cycle of their short life. Their only value is in the profit they produce for their owners.

Yes, animals are considered property by human laws, but in our hearts they are family. Populations must be limited to encourage proper human care.

I vote to limit further mass production via puppy mills and factory farms. If you feel strongly, as I do, you may leave your name and phone number on my answering machine, 507-454-3305.