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September 21, 2011

Dogs Seized from Vermont Puppy Mill Now Receiving Care at Multiple Vt. and Mass. Shelters

The HSUS Granted Custody of Rescued Dogs, Second Chance Animal Shelter in Massachusetts Takes in 12

Twelve dogs are now finding refuge at the Second Chance Animal Shelter in East Brookfield, Mass., after being rescued from a suspected puppy mill in Bakersfield, Vt., in July.

The Humane Society of the United States assisted the Vermont State Police in the seizure of more than 50 Labrador retrievers from a Vermont home where they were being kept in deplorable conditions. The majority of the animals were extremely malnourished and suffering from various parasitic and other health concerns. The HSUS and other organizations cared for the dogs for seven weeks at a temporary shelter while awaiting a hearing to determine their custody. During that time, staff members from Second Chance Animal Shelter, one of The HSUS’ emergency placement partners, also assisted with the care of these dogs.

A judge granted custody of the dogs to The HSUS on Sept. 9, and actions were immediately taken to place them into permanent shelters where they could receive additional medical attention, be spayed or neutered, and be made available for adoption into loving homes. The labs were placed at Windham County Humane Society in Brattleboro, Vt.; the Humane Society of Chittenden County in Burlington, Vt.; Central Vermont Humane Society in Montpelier, Vt.; and Animal Welfare Society in Kennebunk, Maine.

Second Chance welcomed 12 of the dogs, including one very special dog named Ebony, who required treatment for a broken jaw that had been left untreated.

“Being up there every week, I just fell in love with Ebony,” said Second Chance Executive Director Sheryl Blancato. “It broke my heart that such a sweet dog had endured so much. Many of these dogs, including Ebony, show signs of being neglected and overbred. Labs are one of my favorite breeds, therefore this case was especially close to my heart.”

“These dogs have demonstrated amazing resilience,” said Alexis Fox, Massachusetts state director for The HSUS. “They had been so neglected, yet they licked our faces and wagged their tails and worked diligently with behaviorists to learn how to walk on a leash, sit and trust humans. I am incredibly grateful for all Second Chance has done for these dogs, and I look forward to seeing them go to forever homes.”
See video footage from this rescue here.

Media Contact: Stephanie Twining, 301-258-1491, stwining@humanesociety.org

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