Police in Flower Mound, TX, responded late Monday night, October 1, to calls from local residents that dozens of Maltese-type dogs were loose along a country road near Highway 377 and Stonecrest Road. Flower Mound is a suburb of the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex..
Officers rounded up 51 of the frightened little dogs in about an hour, according to NBCNews.com. Some of them were so badly matted they could barely walk.
Tuesday night, 41 more dogs--mostly Cavalier King spaniels--were found abandoned along a rural road near Sanger, about 34 miles north of Flower Mound.
The Humane Society of North Texas believes the cases are related. Flower Mound Police Captain Richard Brooks and humane society officials suspect these despicable acts were done by operators of an illegal puppy mill who no longer want to breed the animals after new legislation tightening breeding regulations was passed last month.
"Unfortunately, there are a few of these really bad breeders who know they're not going to pass inspections and are trying to get out of the business fast," said Peggy Brown, coordinator of community outreach and education for the Humane Society of North Texas.
The dogs rescued in Flower Mound are being housed in the city's animal shelter. All of the animals were filthy and appeared to have lived in inhumane conditions but otherwise seem to be healthy.
City animal control officers say they have heard reports of similar dumps elsewhere in the state. It appears to be a tragic side effect of new regulations designed to protect the dogs in the breeding industry, comments the Dallas Daily News.
"Unfortunately, with a lot of these puppy mill dogs, their feet may have never touched the ground," Peggy Brown said. "They could have spent their whole lives in cages."
Volunteers have been bathing and grooming the dogs for cleanliness and also to relieve the discomfort of those with tightly matted fur, which can be very painful. They will be placed up for adoption next week unless the owner claims them.
"It's really heartbreaking," Brown said. "Hopefully, we can change their lot in life and give them a better future than their past has been."
ABANDONING ANIMALS IS A CRIME!
The Humane Society of North Texas in Forth Worth is offering a $500 reward for information on who dumped the 92 dogs along these country roads in Denton County Monday and Tuesday nights. They can be contacted at 817-332-HSNT.
Flower Mound Police Department is conducting an animal-cruelty investigation and asking for help from the public.