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More than 100 animals removed from Michigan home

Humane Society of Huron Valley

An animal welfare group says it’s rescued more than 100 dogs, cats, and other animals from a home in Michigan where an unlicensed animal breeding operation was housed.

The Humane Society of Huron Valley says it removed 108 animals living in what it called “deplorable conditions” from a Salem Township residence Wednesday morning. The group found 39 exotic cats, 20 kittens, 18 purebred dogs, 16 puppies, 14 chickens, and an African Grey parrot living among piles of feces, with dirty water and a food bowl full of maggots.

The owner, a self-described "hobby breeder,” did not have the proper licenses to breed or kennel the animals. According to Michele Baxter, HSHV’s Cruelty & Rescue Manager, the owner was selling puppies and kittens from $1,100 to $1,800.

“There was no excuse for their poor care,” Baxter said, given the prices for which the animals were being sold.

Many of the animals were found in poor health: underweight, hair matted, and suffering from behavioral issues. Some of the animals were confined to a basement area without ventilation.

“We are deeply grateful to the staff and volunteers who are showing these poor animals what real love is,” said Tanya Hilgendorf, HSHV’s CEO, “and to the Good Samaritan who tipped us off to the situation.”

Investigators will be seeking to prosecute the owner. Under Michigan law, the owner could be punished with imprisonment of up to four years, a fine of up to $5,000, and/or community service for up to 500 hours.

The Associated Press is an independent global news organization dedicated to factual reporting.
jd is a Digital / Social Media Assistant at Michigan Radio.
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