MIO, Mich. (WWJ/AP) – Officials say more than 50 dogs have been seized from a home in Michigan’s northern Lower Peninsula during an animal cruelty investigation.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals says the dogs were removed from the home in Mio, about 165 miles northwest of Detroit, after unsanitary and overcrowded conditions were found.
They included English Bulldogs and Schnauzers, ranging in age from puppies to adults.
This investigation began after authorities received complaints of abuse at the facility, and the ASPCA deployed at the request of the Oscoda County Sheriff’s Department and Oscoda County Animal Control.
Oscoda County officials were at the home for more than eight hours Monday.
The ASPCA said it’s believed the dogs were being bred for sale and the operation wasn’t licensed. Tim Rickey, vice president of ASPCA Field Investigations and Response, told MLive.com that the overall conditions at the home were “just unacceptable.”
The dogs, according to the ASPCA, “were living in small wire cages stacked in a crowded, filthy basement and in ramshackle outdoor pens.” Most dogs allegedly had no access to food or water and were “unsocialized” — meaning they clearly had not been handled much by humans.
“These dogs were living a very sad existence,” said Rickey. “While the puppies at breeding facilities are sold for profit, their parents are often kept there for years, subjected to incessant breeding and typically lacking routine veterinary care and basic socialization, resulting in a very poor quality of life. Our goal is to remove these dogs, help them become healthy, and find them homes once custody is determined by the court.”
The dogs are being housed at a temporary shelter where they will be checked out by a vet.
It was not immediately clear if criminal charges would be filed. The case is under investigation.
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