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The Ruff Report: Dogs and Rescue

75 dogs rescued from filthy puppy mill;
decaying bodies of many others recovered

More than 75 dogs, many covered in their own waste and all living in feces-encrusted pens, have been rescued from a puppy mill in Mississippi, and the decaying bodies of several dogs and puppies were also found at the gruesome scene.

The dogs - mostly small breeds like Shih Tzus, Lhasa Apsos, Pugs, Yorkshire Terriers, Corgis, and Chihuahuas - are malnourished and have skin infections, according to animal welfare officials.

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"We want to see this cruelty come to an end," Tim Rickey, senior director of field investigations and response for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, states in a media release.

The rescue, which took place in Marshall County, stems from complaints the sheriff’s department received about the breeding operation. The sheriff's department called in the ASPCA, the American Humane Association, the Marshall County Humane Society and Collierville Humane Society of Tennessee to assist in the rescue.

The dogs, like this Lhasa Apso (top left) and Shih Tzu (bottom left) with severely matted fur and skin and eye infections in photos from the ASPCA, were treated at an emergency shelter set up at the Marshall County Humane Society in Byhalia, Miss. Some were taken to local animal welfare agencies to get them ready for adoption while others were flown to the ASPCA headquarters in New York City.

"We are grateful for the collaboration of Pet Airways, which offered to fly these dogs at cost, as well as local and out-of-state animal welfare agencies that assisted in this effort,” ASPCA official Matt Bershadker states in a media release.

Gail Buchwald, senior vice president for the ASPCA adoptions center, is hopeful that the dogs, like this Chihuahua at left in photo from the ASPCA, will eventually be placed into good homes. “Once we have medically and behaviorally evaluated these dogs, we look forward to finding them forever homes,” she states in a media release.

Debrah Schnackenberg, director of American Humane’s animal emergency services, says it is important for local and national animal welfare organizations to work together in puppy mill emergency cases.

“Together, we can respond quickly, assemble the best resources, and provide the necessary treatment and care to help get these animals on the road to recovery and into the new, loving homes they all deserve,” she states in a media release.

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Those interested in adopting the dogs or making donations for their care should visit the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, the American Humane Association, the Marshall County Humane Society and Collierville Humane Society of Tennessee.

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