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Mall puppy store causing controversy

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TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

A new puppy store is expected to open at the Westfield Franklin Park Mall in Toledo next month.

Many dog lovers don't want to see that happen.

They're concerned about where those dogs are being bred and what will happen to them after they are purchased.

Close to two thousand people have signed an online petition trying to stop the Family Puppy store from moving into Westfield Franklin Park Mall.

"I think the real issue is that we already have a surplus of dogs in our area and when you bring in a store like that, it's going to appeal to the impulse buyer," said Jean Keating, co-founder of the Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates.

Ms. Keating started the petition.

She says because the dogs are likely to be impulse buys, they are more than likely to end up in a shelter.

John Stottele, owner of the Family Puppy, disagrees.

"So for them to say the dogs that we sell are found at shelters just can't be true because we would get a call from the shelter to know that," said Mr. Stottele.

Mr. Stottele says that is because a micro-chip is planted in all the pups.

Dog advocates also have great concern about where and how the dogs are bred.

"They're not bred for love of the breed, there's no real oversight like you would have with a reputable breeder," said Ms. Keating.

Stottele says the store has an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau and guarantees only family friendly breeds.

"Our goal is to have every single puppy to meet and greet a hundred different people or animals before they're adopted," said Mr. Stottele.

But dog advocates disagree.

"We're very strongly going to encourage people this Christmas to boycott that mall," said Ms. Keating.

Mall officials did say the store is moving in but they didn't comment further.

The store is expected to open by mid-October.

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