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August 17, 2009

The HSUS Awarded More Than 500 Animals Rescued from Texas Puppy Mill

The Humane Society of the United States

KAUFMAN, Texas — Today a Texas judge awarded ownership of all approximately 550 animals rescued during a Kaufman County puppy mill raid to The Humane Society of the United States.

"The judge's decision to grant custody of these approximately 550 animals to The Humane Society of the United States is truly a victory against the cruel puppy mill industry and the beginning of a whole new life for these dogs and cats," said Scotlund Haisley, senior director of Emergency Services for The HSUS. "This is also a victory for the community, who has come out in droves to assist these animals, and have made it clear that animal cruelty will not be tolerated in Kaufman County."

This disposition hearing began Friday, Aug. 13 and was presided over by Judge Johnny Perry. Haisley testified at the hearing, describing the poor living conditions found at the mill and the physical condition of the rescued animals. The animals, who were rescued from horrendous conditions at Klassic Kennels, also known as Peggy's Perfect Pets, have been resting comfortably at the emergency shelter. Dozens of volunteers from The HSUS, United Animal Nations and local groups came together to care for these neglected animals.

The HSUS is now working with humane societies and rescue groups in several states to place the animals. These groups will begin transporting the dogs and cats to their new temporary homes as early as Tuesday morning. Once there the animals will be evaluated and placed for adoption. A list of the shelters and rescue groups that have taken in the animals for adoption will be posted soon at humanesociety.org.

This operation is made possible in part from funding provided to The HSUS by the Kenneth and Lillian Wilde Trust, which funded the creation of the Wilde Puppy Mill Task Force to investigate puppy mills and assist law enforcement with the rescue animals from abusive puppy mills.

Efforts to pass legislation to improve conditions in puppy mills in Texas was defeated earlier this year after being opposed by puppy producers, sellers and kennel clubs. Texas state legislators were unable to reach agreement on a bill to crack down on puppy mills during the 2009 legislative session, but a revised bill is expected to be considered in the 2010 legislative session.

High-quality photos and video from this rescue are available upon request.

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The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization — backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty — On the web at humanesociety.org.

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