Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Expo housing seized animals

Precinct 4 constable officials and officers with the City of Nacogdoches Animal Control unit seized 118 dogs Thursday night from a suspected puppy mill inside Kingtown along County Road 566.

The owner of the backwoods kennel, Lauree Brown, was arrested at the property located about 20 miles outside of Nacogdoches and faces a misdemeanor charge of cruelty to animals, authorities said. A subsequent seizure warrant was issued for all the animals on the property.

The breeds of the dogs included pit bulls, dachshunds, boxers, bull terriers, chihuahuas and schnauzers. Seven cats, seven rats and two rabbits were also seized. Most of the dogs were chained to the ground and had little food or clean water within reach. Several of the dogs were locked inside hot tin sheds and trailers with no water, and some of the smaller dogs were found inside chain link kennels with up to half a dozen other dogs.

Before she was taken to the county jail, Brown told Daily Sentinel reporters who were on the scene that she had the proper documentation for the dogs, and that those with mange were being treated. Animal control officers and Pct. 4 Constable Jason Bridges, who made the arrest, said Brown did not produce the proper documentation for the animals when they arrived.

"These dogs are my dad's, who's in the hospital dying of heart failure right now, and these dogs are the only thing that's kept me from doing the same, and they want to take them from me," Brown emotionally exclaimed from the back seat of a constable's squad car. "I have never been in trouble, and I have loved dogs since I was a baby. I just don't want somebody thinking that I am sitting here neglecting the animals and abusing them."

Brown defended the operation and claimed that she had taken in some of the dogs from friends who no longer wanted the animals, and that they would have been left for dead without her care..." More

Photo: Christy Wooten