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Old August 10th, 2011, 08:59 AM
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Melinda Melinda is offline
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http://www.montrealgazette.com/life/...646/story.html

(man what a screw up)


MONTREAL - Thirty-seven huskies found chained to trees in Lachute northwest of Montreal over the weekend have been taken in, about 30 by the SPCA Laurentides-Labelle in Ste. Agathe des Monts.

After examination, the dogs are to be offered for adoption.

Caroline Ross, founder of Montreal’s Eleven Eleven Animal Rescue, said the dogs – which are between about one and 10 years of age – had been living tethered outdoors since September 2010.

Their owner, a dog trainer and behaviourist, was evicted from his home last month and has since been living in a tent in woods adjacent to his former home. According to one report which could not be independently confirmed, the man had taken responsibility for the huskies after a dogsledding company for which he had been working went out of business.

He and his wife have been camping out with about 50 additional dogs, said Ross. The owner’s wife is said to be a canine breeder who runs a blog on which she dispenses dog-training advice and advertises litters for sale.

“I don’t understand how these people are allowed to own over 80 dogs,” Ross said. “This is basically a homeless person operating a puppy mill.”

After meeting the dogs’ owner, Ross said that “he believes he’s taking good care of the dogs, and doesn’t realize he isn’t.”

The animal activist learned about the dogs through an online ad posted by the new tenant of the dog owner’s former residence. The woman was offering up the huskies for free and threatening to send them to Le Berger Blanc, a Montreal pound that has been under scrutiny this year for its policies on euthanizing animals.

The Eleven Eleven Animal Rescue and Sophie’s Dog Adoption decided to drive to Lachute and rescue the dogs. They originally believed the dogs had been abandoned and were shocked to find their owner on site.

An argument ensued. The Sûreté du Québec was called in to maintain the peace, said SQ spokesperson Daniel Thibodeau.

The owner eventually agreed to let the animal rights groups take seven dogs Saturday and, Ross said, come back the next day to take the rest of the huskies.

When the activists left Sunday with the latter dogs, the owner changed his mind. Police stopped the transfer and ordered the return of the animals.

“It was frustrating to put the dogs back on their chain with no food or water, and puddles to sleep in because in had rained the previous day,” Ross said.

Thibodeau said the SQ would have seized the animals if it considered them in any danger.

Operators of the Ste. Agathe SPCA didn’t return several phone calls Tuesday, but its website indicated it had taken about 30 huskies into its care.

klalancette@montrealgazette.com



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