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June 16, 2011

Hundreds of Dogs Rescued from N.C. Puppy Mill

Dogs housed in unsanitary conditions, lacking medical care

The Humane Society of the United States’ Animal Rescue Team was called in by Caldwell County Animal Control to assist in the rescue of approximately 300 dogs from a Hudson, North Carolina property. The dogs were being housed in unsanitary conditions and lacked proper socialization and medical care. The owner has surrendered all of the dogs to Caldwell County Animal Control.

“Many of these dogs were living in filthy cages so small that they could barely stand up and turn around. This is precisely why North Carolina desperately needs to pass legislation regulating these breeders,” said Kim Alboum, North Carolina state director for The Humane Society of the United States. “Large-scale breeders in our state currently face no regulations or routine inspections. These lax laws have made North Carolina a safe-haven for inhumane puppy mills like this one.”

This case began when animal control received an anonymous tip concerning the welfare of the dogs. This prompted an inspection, which reportedly uncovered unsanitary conditions and unhealthy dogs. When responders arrived on scene they found approximately 300 dogs, mostly Pomeranians and other small breeds, living crowded in small feces-encrusted enclosures.

Slideshow: rescue in action»
Slideshow: emergency shelter»

Many of the dogs were severely matted and suffering from a variety of medical issues. Several deceased dogs were also found at the property. The property owner was selling puppies over the internet to unsuspecting consumers.

The HSUS has safely removed all of the animals and transported them to a nearby emergency shelter. Animal control officers from Catawba, Union and Burke Counties and volunteers from Saving Grace Pet Adoptions, Charlotte Humane Society, North Carolina Voters for Animal Welfare and CARA of Lee County are also assisting with intake of the dogs.  Once at the emergency shelter the dogs will be thoroughly examined by a team of veterinarians and receive any necessary immediate medical treatment. PetSmart Charities ® donated much-needed sheltering supplies for the rescued animals. This rescue was made possible in part by a generous grant from Maddie’s Fund.

The HSUS encourages people to adopt dogs from animal shelters or responsible breeders rather than purchasing a puppy from a pet store or online seller, where most of the dogs may come from puppy mills.

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