Breeder: Daniel Ray Miller
Address: 15090 WI-82
City, State, Zip: Hillsboro, WI 54634
USDA License: 35-A-0342
Date of CAPS Investigation: 7/14/18
Time of CAPS Investigation: 18:06
Weather at time of investigation: 82°F and mostly cloudy
Approximate number of dogs observed at time of investigation: about 60 dogs and nine puppies
Breeds: Shih Tzus, Yorkshire Terriers, Bichon Frises, Pekingese, Pomeranian/Bichon mixes, Pomeranians, Poodles
The kennel had elevated indoor/outdoor cages made entirely of treated wire, including the floorings, on each of two sides. There were about 20 cages per side, with indoor cages having self-feeders and automatic waterers, and a concrete flooring below them. The outdoor cages had wood shavings on the ground below them, with what appeared to be over 24 hours’ worth of fecal accumulation and urine staining the shavings (Sec 3.11 Cleaning, Sanitization, Housekeeping, and Pest Control (a) Cleaning of primary enclosures).
I did not view all cages on the property, but I saw one cage holding three mixed-breed puppies that had a thicker-gauge treated wire flooring for their indoor cage and a whelping cage with a wooden whelping box and an adult Shih Tzu female. Miller pulled the mother out of the cage by using a broom to isolate her in the cage. He then grabbed her by the skin between her shoulder blades to pull her out by one hand. He set her back into the cage holding her the same way (3.19 (b) Handling).
Daniel Ray Miller (Caucasian, Amish male, about 45 years old, 6’6”, 190 lbs, with curly brown hair that went down to his ears, a curly brown bear about 18” long and no moustache) told me that he sells most of his puppies to the broker J.A.K.’s Puppies, who then sells them to pet shops.
Miller said that he never purposefully skips breeding cycles for his dogs and usually breeds them until they are about six to seven years old before giving them away. He showed me a Pomeranian/Bichon mix that was four years old who he said wasn’t breeding very much, and that he was giving away to a rescue. Miller brought her out to show me, and set her down on the ground outside where she stood motionless between Miller and me. He discussed how she may act in a new environment, and said, “She isn’t used to being on the loose and just sticking to the house. She’s in the kennel all the time, then.”
Conditions contradicting pet store claims
I visited the pet store Puppy Experience in Aquebogue, NY on 5/19/18. I saw Miller’s full name and USDA license number on an enclosure for a puppy. I spoke to an employee (Caucasian female, about 30 years old, 5’8”, 130 lbs with long brown hair in a thick braid) at the store who claimed the store’s breeders’ dogs are not in wire-bottomed cages and are all in runs. The employee showed me pictures of kennels in a folder, with dogs in clean in door runs and outdoor runs, and claims those were the conditions all breeders keep their dogs in.
All of Miller’s dogs living in wire cages contradicts the employees claims about the conditions breeders keep their dogs in.