NEW YORK, September 19, 2007The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is assisting several animal welfare agencies who are responding to recent a puppy mill raid in Buxton, Maine, during which more than 200 dogs were seized.
The raid of the J’Aime Kennels was led by the Buxton Police Department and the Maine Animal Welfare Program, a government agency responsible for upholding the animal welfare laws of Maine. The kennels contained more than 200 dogs of various breeds in extreme states of neglect and illness. The owners, John and Heidi Frasca, were issued 14 summonses for operating an unlicensed kennel, two summonses for animal cruelty and one summons for failing to provide necessary medical treatment to animals.
“In the face of such cruelty and neglect, it is heartwarming to see the animal welfare community come together to care for these animals,” said ASPCA President & CEO Ed Sayres.
The dogs at the facility are in the official custody of the Animal Welfare Society (AWS) and the Animal Refuge League (ARL). A majority of the dogs are still being housed at the site, where they are all being treated for illnesses and conditions including sarcoptic mange, giardia, coccidia and ringworm, until they can be relocated to a leased facility in Portland. The number of animals continues to grow, however, with at least one litter of puppies being born daily during the first week following the August 20 seizure.
“We dispatched our disaster response team to assist the incident management team who are charged with providing the best environment, medical and emotional care for the animals, insuring the integrity of the criminal case, oversight and safety of volunteers and staff, and creating the new shelter facility and transporting all animals safely,” said Sayres. “The ASPCA is also providing grant assistance to AWS and ARL, who have been most affected by this case, as well as drawing from our staff of professionals to offer valuable expertise.” These include the ASPCA’s Senior Director of National Outreach Bert Troughton, who has been working as volunteer manager. ASPCA Forensic Veterinarian Dr. Melinda Merck and Senior Director of National Outreach Kate Pullen have also each offered their expertise in criminal casework and shelter configuration and operating procedures, respectively.
Other national and local organizations have also been assisting on site, including the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA), Monadnock Humane Society, New Hampshire Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NHSPCA) and many others.
ASPCA officials will remain on the scene for as long as they are needed, and continue to provide updates as appropriate. For more information or to donate toward the expense of this case, please contact arlgp.org or animalwelfaresociety.org. For more information on the ASPCA and its Disaster Readiness program, please visit www.aspca.org.