Petland Fort Myers
7091-13 College Pkwy
Fort Myers, FL 33907
(239) 277-9939

Date and time of CAPS investigation: 08/21/21; 1550

Approximate number of puppies observed at time of investigation: 60

There were about 30 puppy enclosures in the store, set along two walls. The enclosures held one to three puppies each, and were made with solid walls with cage doors at their backs that faced an area for employees to access. They had treated wire floorings, water bottles, and toys. Each had a single towel or plastic mat, large enough for one puppy to fit on, regardless of how many puppies were in enclosures. In at least two enclosures, there puppies large enough they couldn’t all lay down without touching either each other or the walls of their enclosures, including an enclosure about 3.5 feet long and 2.5 feet wide and tall with two Labradoodles, and another with two Goldendoodles and a Bassett Hound (Sec. 5-4 (b)(5) to keep the animal in an enclosure that does not permit the animal to make normal postural movements).

I spoke to an employee (Caucasian female, about 40 years old, 5’4″, 110 lbs, with long brown hair and yellow and brown stained teeth, who identified herself as Kelly) about breeders, and she said she can provide me with info to research breeders on my own. She told me that she believed the store has “about five breeders.” I asked about conditions in which breeding dogs are kept, and she said, “Petland gets a bad name, obviously. Like a lot of times. If you ever look Petland up, it has such a bad name. And I’ve worked at two so far. Like this one, and in Largo, and both of them, sometimes the puppies, the puppies have issues. I’ve noticed, but breeding, you’re gonna’ have that. If you’re breeding, it’s gonna’, sometimes issues come up.” She then told me, “They are all USDA registered breeders. So being USDA registered, they can’t have any marks up, mark-ups within one year from the government. They can’t have any write-ups.” I asked, “Or they’re done?” She answered, “Or they’re not registered.”

I asked for details on breeders, and the employee said, “They sometimes have them in kennels like ours, and they have open yards. It just depends… What I’ve seen from the pictures, they’re not puppy mills.” She then referred me to a manager (Caucasian female, about 30 years old, 5’5″, 100 lbs, with long brown hair, who identified herself as Leah), who said that she and a woman named Victoria each handle about four breeders, ordering puppies and visiting them once a year. She told me, “And so with our breeders, they normally, I normally see anywhere from fifteen to thirty females on average. Right around there. With them, they have farmland. And so, at night they go back in their kennel.” She then told me that kennels are about six feet long and four feet wide, in addition to an outside dog run. She added, “But they do get let out two to three times a day to go in the pasture.” She also said, “With our breeders, they breed roughly up to four years of age and then they get retired. So, what that means, by getting retired, they adopt them out. They don’t get euthanized or anything like that. My biggest concern is, hey they get bred, they can go to a forever family. So, when they do adopt them out, they don’t sell them. It’s pretty much like, hey this is a retired breeder. Let’s just say, Golden Retriever. Here you go, pretty much.”

I asked if breeders have any USDA violations, and she answered, “No. They have, so say like, direct is, how do I put it? I’m not gonna’ put it gingerly. Piss-poor conditions. Disgusting. Limited to zero vet care. So when we go in, we want to make sure that the dogs are taken just as well care of as the puppies are. And so some of the stipulations we have is we pay more attention to the adult dogs when we go to visit. Because if they shy away from us, they don’t want to come up, they don’t want to play, that they’re not socializing with adult dogs like they do puppies. We also want to be sure they’re being just as taken care of as the puppies are.”

I then asked Kelly for breeder information on a Cavalier puppy, and she did so. It showed the breeder as John D Graber from Odon, IN, but had no USDA number provided.

Evidence of false statements and misrepresentations of breeders by store:


Breeder information obtained while visiting the store:
John D Graber, Odon, IN

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