Mississippi Puppy Mill

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American Humane Association’s Red Star Animal Emergency Services team participated in the seizure of 95 dogs from a puppy mill in Marshall County, Miss., on Feb. 4, 2010. They included small breeds, such as Shih Tzus, Lhasa apsos, pugs, Yorkshire terriers, corgis, and Chihuahuas.

Our participation was at the request of the ASPCA (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals), and under the authority and request of Shirley C. Byers of the Marshall County (Miss.) Prosecutor’s Office, to assist in animal-handling and sheltering operations.

The team discovered the dogs living in feces-encrusted pens and filth. Manny Maciel, one of our Red Star volunteers, said that many dogs appeared to be underweight and have skin diseases, among other medical conditions. Several dead adult dogs and puppies also were found.

On the scene with the ASPCA and American Humane Association were personnel from Marshall County Humane Society, Mississippi State University and Collierville (Tenn.) Humane Society, who removed and transported animals to an emergency shelter site at the Marshall County Humane Society Clinic in Byhalia, Miss. There they were triaged by a veterinary team and temporarily sheltered before being transferred to other animal welfare agencies and ultimately made available for adoption.

View the local television news coverage about this case.

American Humane Association’s Diane Robinson, who was on the scene when the seizure took place, reported: “The warrant was issued at 9 a.m. Shortly after, all animals were signed over and, by 1:00, we were getting our first load of 35 dogs. At 3 p.m. the last load headed to the shelter. We have a total of 95 dogs and 1 cat. Allison got placements for all the animals. Some of the moms and puppies may move out as early as tomorrow. Tim hopes to have the rest moving out Sun and Mon.”

UPDATE: On Sunday, Feb. 7, American Humane Association’s responders loaded the last 34 dogs onto a Pet Airways plane, which transported them to the ASPCA’s New York headquarters for adoption. The balance of the seized animals had already been transferred to other animal welfare agencies.

View the news videos about the dogs’ flight to New York.

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