Outside Dogs from Midland County Backyard Breeder are Safe with Rescue Groups

Miss Molly was rescued by Westie Rescue of Michigan

Miss Molly was rescued by Westie Rescue of Michigan

Recently, a story about some small breed dogs being housed outside in rabbit hutches sparked outrage in Midland County and all over the country as the photos went viral. Many people contacted Midland County to ask that something be done to protect the dogs but the Sheriff had said that no laws were being broken. On February 6th, Midland County Sheriff Scott Stephenson met with the family that owns the dogs at this kennel. After a lengthy conversation, the family chose to voluntarily surrender all of the dogs that were being kept in the outside kennels. The animals were transported by the Animal Control Division of the Sheriff’s Department and arrangements were made to turn the animals over to previously contacted animal rescue groups.

Back in December when the photos of the dogs first came out, Laurel Barrick, who runs the Michigan Dog Rescue Advocates email list, reached out to several animal rescue groups – A New Start On Life , Cavalier Rescue USA, Westie Rescue of Michigan, and Animal Placement Bureau. They began online conversations about how to help. They sent their contact information and their willingness to step up to help in the event that the dogs were removed or surrendered.

A New Start On Life, a foster based rescue group, kept three dogs within their group – a male Yorkshire Terrier who is about three years old, a male Poodle mix who is about three or four years old and a Beagle/Terrier mix female who is about 1-1/2 years old.

Freeway (Poodle), Rolly (Beagle) and the unnamed Yorkie went to A New Start on Life

Freeway (Poodle), Rolly (Beagle) and the unnamed Yorkie went to A New Start on Life

All of the dogs rescued were infested with internal parasites and had grooming issues. The Westies had some ear infections. The dogs from A New Start on Life remain in foster care until they are placed. They will be made available in about three weeks, depending on how they are doing in the foster homes. Because of the parasites they came with, the rescue group needs to make sure they are cleared up before being adopted out.

One of the dogs gets transported to safety

One of the dogs gets transported to safety

A new life awaits as the dogs get transported to rescue groups

A new life awaits as the dogs get transported to rescue groups

The dogs were checked out at the vet and also groomed

The dogs were checked out at the vet and also groomed

Several dogs had bad dental issues

Several dogs had bad dental issues

A New Start On Life is no stranger to to breeder surrender/hoarding rescues. About ten years ago, they were asked to rescue 63 small dogs from a hoarding situation in Allegan County. We travel to Missouri about twice a year bringing back dozens of dogs released by commercial breeders.

A New Start On Life is a very small non-profit group. They can certainly could use donations to help with the dogs. Monetary donations can be made on line to their paypal account at paypal@anewstartonlife.com or mailed to A New Start On Life, PO Box 78, Hamilton, MI  49419. All donations are tax deductible.

In addition to the dogs listed above, three Cavaliers went to Cavalier Rescue USA, six West Highland Terriers went to Westie Rescue of Michigan, and two Cocker Spaniels went to Animal Placement Bureau. Westie Rescue of Michigan has set up a fundraiser to help with the care of the dogs they took in here.

six dogs westie group

Lily looking much better after a good grooming

Lily looking much better after a good grooming. Photo credit: Westie Rescue of Michigan

Each group arranged to meet at the Sheriff’s office and transported their dogs to the individual rescue. This all was arranged within two hours. The person interviewed for this story from A New Start on Life said, “I think this is a wonderful example of reputable rescues communicating and working together towards a common goal.”

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7 thoughts on “Outside Dogs from Midland County Backyard Breeder are Safe with Rescue Groups

  1. Cheryl Gehrke February 13, 2015 at 9:49 pm Reply

    Wow I cannot tell you how happy I am about the rescues getting the dogs. I am just shuddering to think about what was in the rabbit hutches before these dog breeders went to dogs. Did they have rabbits before who were in the hutches and they all died because of lousy care, so they went to breeding dogs instead. It makes me cringe.

  2. Dr melmo February 13, 2015 at 9:55 pm Reply

    Sheriff told the rescues that there were Westie puppies on site. I am not sure where you got your information.

    • Pet Friends Magazine February 13, 2015 at 11:44 pm Reply

      Got my information from someone who participated in the rescue and talked to the Sheriff. I don’t know who you are and where you got your information. What is your source? Direct?

  3. Betty February 14, 2015 at 8:23 am Reply

    Maybe you misread this line “The Sheriff said that there were NO puppies on site.”

  4. Pet Friends Magazine February 15, 2015 at 10:38 am Reply

    I removed the line about the puppies not being there as I now have two different accounts.

  5. Jackie Oszczudlak February 17, 2015 at 12:55 pm Reply

    “A New Start On Life is no stranger to to breeder surrender/hoarding rescues. About ten years ago, they were asked to rescue 63 small dogs from a hoarding situation in Allegan County. We travel to Missouri about twice a year bringing back dozens of dogs released by commercial breeders.”
    they are not released, they are sold to these rescues and it changes nothing for these dogs. it just helps the breeders line their pockets so they can just produce more so the stupid rescues will pay again. people need to get off their assets and get the laws changed. this is a vicious circle that will never end

    • Pet Friends Magazine February 17, 2015 at 4:50 pm Reply

      Obviously, the laws need to be changed but I fault no rescue groups for rescuing or buying any of these dogs to save their lives. Every life matters. If no one saves them, they are killed. You don’t ignore a life that could be saved because things are not going the way you’d like them to go.

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