Almost 200 dogs were rescued from a New Jersey home on June 11 in what authorities say was a “massive hoarding situation.”
Police sources told NBC that the dogs—many who were pregnant or had masses and infections—were rescued from a home of a prominent breeder, who had previously won awards from the Westminster Kennel Club. The specific location of the home was not disclosed.
Monmouth County SPCA said it worked with another animal shelter to rescue the 188 dogs that were living in dirty conditions at the home and in other buildings on the site. The rescue workers also found 20 dead dogs in the freezer at the location, reported the news broadcaster.
“All of these dogs seem to have had limited human contact and minimal to no veterinary care,” Monmouth County SPCA said in a statement, which was accompanied by photos of the dogs.
The other animal shelter, St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center, said in a statement that volunteers and staff worked for 72 hours continuously to prepare for the rescued animals’ arrival.
Both shelters are asking for donations to cover the costs of the dogs’ treatment and care.
“We know that all will be in need of vaccination, deworming and spay/neuter. We anticipate discovering medical issues at a variety of levels,” the statement said.
Police have not disclosed whether anyone will be charged in the case, reported the Associated Press.
In a similar case, a Minnesota woman pleaded guilty to 13 counts of animal cruelty, including one felony count, after more than 100 animals were found at her home last May.
Caycee Bregel, 25, entered her plea on April 12 in response to one felony count of Mistreatment of Animals and twelve misdemeanor counts of Mistreatment of Animals in connection with the death and care of a number of cats.
Bregel drew attention last year after authorities responded to reports that a pig was running loose in the area, only to eventually discover over 100 animals, including 64 dead cats, in her home in Farmington, Minnesota. Bregel also ran the nonprofit “Minnesota Animal Rescue.”
Bregel was sentenced to 200 hours of community service, two years of probation, and 90 days of electronic home monitoring, according to Pioneer Press, and she was also ordered to undergo a psychological examination. In addition, Bregel cannot own, possess, or care for any animals.
“The abuse and mistreatment of animals in the manner that occurred in this instance was unconscionable,” Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom said in a statement, according to Pioneer Press.
In another case, a 20-year-old man from Missouri was charged with animal abuse for buying cats on a popular listing site before torturing and eventually killing them, according to reports.
Kaine Louzader has been charged with two counts of animal abuse after he admitted to police that he was abusing the animals, according to Fox 2 Now.
Between January and May this year, dozens of cats and kittens were found dead in the area of Wild Deer Lane, according to a probable cause statement obtained by the news website.
The prosecutor’s office said many of these cats appeared to be killed, while some kittens were found mutilated.
Currently, 50 states have laws that prevent cruelty against animals, however, if animals get tortured across state lines, there is little to protect them.
Magaret Wollensak contributed to this report.