Feds Find Neglect at Local Animal Dealer—PETA Seeks Prosecutor Probe

And Buyer Beware: Adopt, Never Shop for Guinea Pigs or Other Small Animals, Says Group

For Immediate Release:
February 10, 2021

David Perle 202-483-7382

Gary, Ind. – PETA has just obtained U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) inspection reports regarding local small-animal breeding mill Kuiper Rabbit Ranch, LLC, revealing horrific conditions and severe neglect, including animals dying of heatstroke during transport and hundreds caged in their own feces, and is asking Lake County Prosecutor Bernard A. Carter to investigate immediately.

As recently as January 7, the USDA found a deep, open, and bloody wound on a guinea pig’s leg and feces stuck to her foot—and staff were evidently unaware of her painful injury. Cages containing a total of 1,334 guinea pigs were all encrusted with dried urine, and there were feces in many food bowls and excessive feces in approximately a quarter of the cages in one barn. A January 2020 inspection noted similar filth along with the deaths of three guinea pigs who became overheated during an eight-hour drive to a customer. Earlier reports note hundreds of guinea pigs with chewed ears and thin coats caged with large accumulations of feces and urine. Additionally, up to 500 rabbits were kept in severely rusted cages.

“Pet stores and even laboratories buy small, vulnerable animals from hellholes like this, where they suffer in filth and pain,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “This is one reason why PETA urges people to adopt animals from shelters and rescue groups rather than buying them.”

In light of the findings, PETA has asked Carter to investigate Kuiper Rabbit Ranch and, as appropriate, file criminal cruelty-to-animals charges against those responsible for causing the needless suffering of animals there.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind