Following anonymous tips, a multi-departmental investigation of a property in Cabarrus County, NC, as seen in the video below, revealed 105 dogs, 20 cats and three goats in “unsafe and unsanitary” living conditions.
According to Erica Geppi, NC State Director for the Humane Society, “the first thing that just hits you across the face right away is the ammonia of dogs living in their own squalor—feces, urine everywhere.”
This recent raid was conducted by the NC Sheriff’s Office and members of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). A few days after the raid, the sheriff’s office charged Patricia Yates of Kannapolis, NC, with one count of cruelty to animals. Additional charges are pending. Yates surrendered the custody of the animals to authorities, allowing the rescue organizations to move forward.
The lack of care found in the facility was horrifying. According to reports, one dog’s tongue was sticking out of his mouth because all of his teeth had rotted out, and his jaw had basically rotted into the bone. “Animals were spinning in their enclosures because they just go crazy.”
Complaints about the property lead investigators to believe that a puppy-mill was in operation. According to the HSUS, North Carolina is one of multiple states where commercial dog breeding is unregulated. A Bill for minimum care of animals in puppy mills, which would mandate clean water, fresh food and adequate care, passed the House in NC, but failed in the Senate. According to reports, this failure to pass has happened over and over in that state.
The animals in this facility, as in all puppy- and kitten-mills, were overbred, having litter after litter, living in their own filth, with no medical care. The HSUS was joined by a local animal hospital for on-site care. The animals were then transferred to the care of various organizations including responders from Red Rover.
Thanks to the local tipsters, these animals now have a brighter future. “They’re being petted, their little tails started wagging, and their little spirits started coming out.” Their availability will be determined by the caring organizations.
The HSUS offers rewards of up to $5,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of puppy mill operators. Phone tips can be left at 1-877-MILL-TIP. Be a friend to animals and help stop puppymills!