Despite the public outcry and politicians starting to make some major changes in some states, puppy factory owners are still persisting in carrying out their brutal practices for profit.
Where there is a money trail there will always be a lobby group, and no matter how despicable the industry, or how cruel and inhumane the industry practices may be. If one stoops low enough they will always find an industry lobby group devoid of moral integrity that will sell their souls for a few quid no matter how morally repugnant the people they willingly support.
One such industry lobby group is the Pet Industry Association of Australia, or PIAA.
On October 21st PIAA announced that it had appointed new members to its board, one of those members is a notorious puppy factory owner/operator Matt Hams.
This isn’t the first time PIAA have been linked to puppy factories. Previously I have reported on PIAA’s relationship with the disreputable industry groups Pets Australia and AAPDB who both specialise in puppy factories and representing businesses that would turn the stomach of an abattoir worker, and give a mob hitman sleepless nights.
Matt Hams runs Banksia Park Puppies, a notorious puppy factory.
RSPCA Inspection reports obtained through Freedom Of Information Act detail Banksia Park Puppies employees picking up dogs by the scruff of the neck in a cruel manner that causes animal’s considerable pain and stress. According to the report the RSPCA had to then explain to staff the correct way to handle dogs. If this is how staff treat dogs while RSPCA inspectors are present one can only speculate how they are treated normally.
Perhaps the most disturbing part of the report is the RSPCA state that at the time there were 575 dogs on the premises at Banksia Park Puppies. A hideous thought indeed.
One thing RSPCA inspectors can’t teach Banksia Park Puppies however is customer service.
The O’Reilly family were excited when they purchased a pup from Banksia Park Puppies assuming that it was medically sound having been assured it was vet checked. Alas the O’Reilly family were soon to discover the assurances and promises of a puppy factory are worth less than nothing.
What lay ahead for the O’Reilly’s was a year of falling in love with their puppy Max as Max fell apart and was eventually euthanised. One can only imagine the distress of the children.
Poor Max was born with a serious genetic problem, a sadly common occurrence with bad breeding practices, and was an orthopedic mess. In his final days spent in shocking pain poor Max couldn’t even move.
For their trouble the O’Reilly’s had spent over $5,000 treating the serious issues Max suffered with that Matt Hams vet has somehow missed.
When this was raised with Banksia Park Puppies instead of condolences, apologies and a refund of expenses, the O’Reilly’s were subject to attempts to be silenced and bought off by PIAA’s new board member Matt Hams.
Matt Hams offered to pay the expenses of the O’Reilly family as long as they signed a non-disclosure agreement and provided copies of their driver’s licenses.
The O’Reilly’s were disgusted by this demand and instead decided to go public as a warning to others naive enough to look to Banksia Park Puppies for anything other than heartache and issues.
Below is a copy of the agreement the O’Reilly’s were asked to sign and a letter from their vet.
We have laws regarding the sale of faulty goods in this country, I wonder what the ACCC would make of this sorry tale.
When the Herald Sun ran the story Banksia Park Puppies owner and new PIAA Board Member Matt Hams stated;
“The cold hard reality of breeding living things is that sometimes things go wrong,”
In regards to the non-disclosure agreement, or confidentiality clause, Hams explained it was
“standard business practice when we hand over that kind of money”.
Having a “standard business practice” would seemingly confirm this type of issue is a common one at Banksia Park Puppies. Given the cost of vet bills one also wonders how many other customers with issues signed the clause, took the money and wrote the whole thing off as a bad experience and lesson learned.
If only they had seen this article by Debra Tranter on the deceptive tactics of this business before making their purchase.
Speaking of puppy factory’s and dodgy industry groups brings me once again to Murray River Puppies and the AAPDB.
Jodie Knox, who along with her husband Joe (real name Andrew Malcolm) Knox run Murray River Puppies appear to have found themselves a new customer.
This post recently went up on the factories Facebook page and although the quote could have just been made up, I strongly suspect it came from either Rose or Bob from Mt Lawley Puppies in WA.
The Mt Lawley website stated recently that they were now going to be sourcing pups for their controversial store from a new supplier, and one that was AAPDB approved. Given AAPDB’s lack of size and stature this only leaves a handful of options. Jodie Knox also pointed out that the couple who apparently said it were from WA it seems to fit.
Also telling is the disgraceful commentary regarding Oscar’s Law. Given that Rose, Bob, and Roses son Chris are looking down the barrel of bearing the thousands in legal costs that are to be passed onto them when legal action they have taken against animal advocates without evidence collapses.
One ironic comment in the Facebook post was this one;
“They should be sent to a third world country and have to do five years volunteer work.”
I’ll leave aside the subtle differences between forced labour and volunteer work that small minds may not grasp.
Far from thinking that volunteer work in a third world country is a punishment, those running Oscar’s Law consider the helping of others less fortunate to be both noble and a privilege.
These puppy farmers and their retail outlets may think it’s a punishment worse than death to assist the needy but those at Oscar’s Law don’t share that view.
In fact Oscar’s Law President Tanya funds and operates an orphanage in a third world country, I won’t name it here as she doesn’t need the grief from puppy farmers and their trolls taking away from time that could be better spent, after all these kids have suffered enough. Tanya told me when contacted that
“The notion that volunteering for charity work in a third world country is some sort of punishment is highly offensive, ignorant, and inhumane.”
Recently I contacted Jodie Knox regarding her decision to step down as the President of AAPDB given the rumours it was a forced resignation and that it had been planned by rival industry groups.
Jodie responded with a media release that stated;
“Jodie Knox, the President of the AAPDB has come to the end of her five-year leadership position…”
Nobody can accuse Jodie of not working fast, have reached the end of that five-year position in approximately two years.
The AAPDB has in fact had two Presidents since its inception in 2009 Jodie Knox, and disgraced vet and puppy factory owner/operator Kate Schoeffel, who resigned in disgrace after her puppy factory was raided. I don’t know how being on your third president in six years equates to five year terms but I’ll leave that to the mathematics whiz’s to ponder. Whoever the new President is they are clearly not someone to brag about as they appear to be too ashamed to have mentioned them on their website.
The AAPDB came about because it’s always good to have an industry body endorse and recommend you. It’s also good to have one with a name that sounds familiar even if it isn’t and one that has a good seal or logo that you can use to show how supposedly reputable you are.
If you run business that is awful, abhorrent, and utterly loathed by the public, than you can do what these puppy factory operators did, just make one up.
This is traditionally done by gathering a bunch of equally failed friends, one only needs a couple, think of a name, register as an organization, and endorse yourselves. Hey Presto… The AAPDB is born.
The AAPDB is an organization that simply made up a name and registered as an organisation. Then they found a few clients that were just as unscrupulous as they were and were willing to fork out a few bucks for the endorsement of dodgy organisation that sounded passable to the uninformed punter.
In fact, if you see their logo on a pet store, think of it as really saying “Puppy Factory Rejects Outlet Store”. An outlet for the puppies the puppy factories direct customers have rejected.
I was fortunate enough to be in Cobram recently and took the time to drive past Murray River Puppies next to the cemetery, when I posted some pictures online including one of the property across the road the owner rang me up and threatened me with legal action because I had made the property he had been trying to sell for over a year “impossible to sell” by mentioning who his neighbours were. Apparently he is a friend of the Knox’s’?
I have also been warned several times that Andrew Malcolm Knox or Joe as he prefers is a hot head and is linked with bikie gangs. Implications that there may be repercussions for my work and I should be wary have been made by concerned people in the industry.
Well folks, I call it as I see it and I’m not about to be put off by some rumoured wannabe BMX Bandit with an attitude problem.Follow @madwixxy