14 dogs seized from suspected puppy mill in Abbotsford
September 28, 2010. For immediate release.
The BC SPCA has seized 14 badly neglected dogs from suspected puppy mill operators in the Fraser Valley.
The dogs, which included shih tzus, chihuahuas, pugs and terrier crosses, were seized on Sept. 24 from a location in Abbotsford, but the BC SPCA says the owner of the seized animals also bred dogs in various locations in the valley including Chilliwack and Maple Ridge and owns a pet store, where they sell the dogs and puppies. Two of the other locations, including the pet store, are also currently under SPCA investigation.
“These people are well known to us and we have dealt with numerous complaints about sick and neglected animals in their care,” said Marcie Moriarty, general manager of cruelty investigations for the BC SPCA. “In any investigation we are required by law to first issue orders and allow the owners an opportunity to improve conditions for the animals. In the case of these individuals we have issued numerous orders relating to animals with health and dental problems and animals in need of veterinary care but they have complied with the orders so we could not take further action.
“In this particular instance we received a call from a member of the public regarding dogs on a property in Abbotsford, a subsequent investigation determined the dogs to be in distress and that the owner was known to us. As a result we were able to obtain a warrant to relieve the distress of the animals.”
Moriarty said the animals seized on Sept. 24 were living in poor conditions and some of the dogs were badly matted. They were also suffering from a range of untreated health issues such as ulcerated eyes and other eye infections, dental disease and badly overgrown nails.
Moriarty said the seizure highlights the need for better municipal legislation to stop the sale of puppy mill dogs. “Unfortunately there is currently little to stop unscrupulous breeders from exploiting animals for profit when they can sell their puppies through local pet stores, classified ads and online sites. If people could see firsthand the sickening conditions these animals are forced to endure in order to maximize profits I believe they would be appalled.” She noted that Richmond city council is expected to consider a possible sale on the ban of dogs in pet stores on Oct. 4.
The BC SPCA investigation into the suspected puppy mill continues and charges of animal cruelty are pending.
Note to media: If you would like to take photos or videos of the animals, arrangements can be made through senior animal protection officer Eileen Drever (contact information below).
For more information:
Eileen Drever, senior animal protection officer, BC SPCA, 604-709-4670;
Marcie Moriarty, general manager, cruelty investigations, BC SPCA, 604-258-8642 (cell);
Lorie Chortyk, general manager, community relations, BC SPCA, 604-830-7179 (cell).
The BC SPCA is a non-profit organization funded primarily by
public donations. Our mission is to prevent cruelty and to promote the
welfare of animals through a wide range of services, including cruelty
investigations, emergency rescue and treatment, sheltering and adoption
of homeless and abused animals, humane education, advocacy, farm animal
welfare, spay/neuter programs, and wildlife rescue and rehabilitation.