South Dakota Pet Store/Puppy Mill Connection

©Bailing Out Benji 2018
All research and information was done by the volunteer team at Bailing Out Benji  and must be cited as such when shared or quoted!

We don’t buy from puppy mills.”

“All of our puppies come from small, local breeders.”

“We visit every breeder we buy from.”

We have all heard these sentences come from the mouths of pet store owners and their employees. They paint this beautiful picture of puppies running by a pond and parents frolicking in the fresh, green grass… Sadly, 99% of the time that is a bold faced lie. The pet store owners know it, the employees might know it- but the customer is completely in the dark.

This is why we are here.

Bailing Out Benji is a small nonprofit that started in Ames, Iowa and now has volunteer teams all over the country, including South Dakota,  who are dedicated to raising awareness about the puppy mill industry.

So what is the truth? With the pet stores claiming they don’t buy from breeders with any violations and posting clean inspections and photos on their websites, it looks like they are being very open. What is the public supposed to believe when the nice store owner and employees paint such a believable and beautiful picture? Again… This is why we are here.

Volunteers from Bailing Out Benji devote their free time to researching puppy mills to create puppy mill maps for the worst states, as well as raise awareness about notorious pet stores and breeding operations with huge violations. This includes obtaining CVI data (Certificates of Veterinary Inspections) and making those reports public. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture claims that CVI data in SD isn’t public record, so our research has been obtained for this state from families who purchased from the stores. 

To make this easier, we will be breaking our article down by each pet store and connecting them to the various puppy mills they use. 


Crazy Critters- 805 E Denver St, Rapid City, SD 57701

  1. Milton Lewis, Rock Hill Dog Ranch. Newport, Nebraska- This puppy mill was just named one of the worst puppy mills in the entire nation. With violations including: egregious problems with sick and injured dogs; one puppy had a leg torn off, according to state report; owner euthanized 14 unwanted dogs and puppies, refusing offer to send them to rescues; some were euthanized only because of burrs stuck in their fur. 

This research is ongoing and we will add information as we obtain it! If you want to learn more about the South Dakota Puppy Mill Problem, click here


Have you purchased a puppy from a South Dakota Pet Store? From any pet store? Fill out the form below and we will help you track down where your puppy was born!