A French bulldog named Lyla was reportedly killed while two of her unborn puppies were still inside her, because her owner allegedly bred her and then paid a sham veterinarian $650 to perform an illegal, at-home C-section. The owner’s daughter reportedly filmed the nightmare and posted it to TikTok, which evidently led to both the owner’s and the fake veterinarian’s arrests.
In the video, a French bulldog can be seen being flipped onto her back on a table that appears to be set in a kitchen or living room—during the C-section, she visibly squirms. Investigators apparently believe that Lyla had not been properly anesthetized prior to the botched, ultimately fatal surgery. Allegedly, her owner then took her to a licensed veterinarian’s office, but she was dead on arrival. An office manager apparently told investigators that two of Lyla’s dead, unborn puppies were still inside her when she was brought in. As one of the office’s veterinarians reportedly told investigators, Lyla and the two puppies endured “unjust cruelty and suffering due to unethical medical services performed.”
Two men were arrested in Florida after a TikTok video allegedly showed one of them performing an unlicensed c-section on a French bulldog, officials say. https://t.co/nAGlutrJU8
— NBC News (@NBCNews) February 18, 2021
Both Lyla’s owner and the sham veterinarian reportedly face cruelty-to-animals charges, and the latter evidently faces an additional count for practicing veterinary medicine without a license.
Lyla never should have been pregnant.
French bulldogs generally need to be artificially inseminated, and—because of “purebred” physical traits—they typically give birth by C-section. However, the only surgery that Lyla should’ve received was one performed by a licensed veterinarian, before she was bred: She should’ve been spayed. Whether she was pregnant because her owner wanted to sell her puppies, give them away, or keep them for himself is irrelevant—he doomed her and her babies the moment that he chose to deny Lyla, whom he had a duty to protect, a lifesaving spay surgery.
Spaying Saves Lives
Spaying (and neutering) helps stem the tide of homeless dogs. Spaying eliminates the stress and discomfort that females endure during heat periods, eliminates the risk of uterine cancer, and greatly reduces the risk of mammary cancer.
Female dogs should be spayed shortly after they reach 8 weeks of age, and most shelters and veterinarians encourage early spaying, which can be less stressful for animals. (Younger animals tend to recuperate from surgery more quickly.) And if Lyla was old enough to breed, she was old enough to have been spayed.
TikTok, Facebook, and other video-sharing sites are making it harder for breeders to hide their abusiveness.
Just last month, PETA alerted authorities in Onslow County, North Carolina, to a Facebook video that apparently showed a local dog breeder clearly abusing a German shepherd named Raven while she was in labor. According to news sources, the breeder posted the live feed of Raven in labor so that potential buyers could watch her give birth to her puppies, but one such customer was shocked when she signed on to the video link and reportedly witnessed the breeder mistreating and cursing at the already stressed-out dog while she was confined to a cage.
Repeat after PETA: There’s no such thing as a “responsible breeder.”
The two stories above illustrate how breeders will put their own obsession with “pure bloodlines” and appetite for money ahead of animals’ well-being. Even Lyla’s surviving puppies—who may have been inbred in order to produce breed-specific traits, as many French bulldogs are—will likely be plagued with a lifetime of breathing problems. While breeders can always be counted on for their vile devotion to breeding the “perfect” animal, we can ensure that dogs can count on the rest of us to reject “designer” dog mania—we can be the guardians Raven, Lyla, and others can depend on. Please do the following:
- Never support dog breeders.
- Adopt, don’t shop!
- Never choose a dog based on “purebred” status.
- Always have your animal companions spayed or neutered.