NewsLocal NewsIn Your ParishSt. Landry Parish


Authorities accept deal from mill owner

The owner surrendered some of the dogs to investigators but still has 100+ dogs.
Posted at 10:18 PM, Mar 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-06 14:18:10-05

OPELOUSAS, La. — 11 more dogs have been removed from a home in St. Landry Parish that is the subject of an animal cruelty investigation.

Last week, more than 100 puppies were seized from a home in Sunset.

St. Landry Parish Animal Control says the owner of the animals surrendered the majority of the animals from the recent raid under some conditions.

“She gave up 130+ breeding dogs, moms, and little males,” said director Terri Courvelle. “She only surrendered those.”

No charges have been presented to the owner of the puppy mill.

St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office says they’re still waiting to hear the results of the vet’s examination.

However, the director of animal control says there are obvious signs of animal neglect, which would be unlawful under the parish’s animal abuse ordinance.

“We had a vet on the scene that assessed every single dog and made notes on them, and yes, it was a neglect issue,” said Courvelle.

Courvelle says the owner surrendered those breeding animals only if she got to keep the nursing moms and pups, which totaled to about 100 animals that stayed with the owner.

Otherwise, the shelter would’ve had to keep all of the animals through a lengthy court process, which could take up to 18 months. Now, the director is able to check the welfare of the animals at any moment.

“It was also in her own surrender that the director could check on these animals at any given time, with no advanced warning,” said Courvelle.

She says she plans on checking in every three weeks or so.

Parish President Jessie Ballard says the most recent raid included 11 dogs.

“But there was space for a hundred at that location,” he said. “And we know they moved them. And that’s okay, just like we got one tip, we’ll get another.”

Courvelle says the animals were standing in urine, overcrowded, and without warmth and many of them are now facing medical issues – even having to remove a puppy’s eye.

Ballard says these dogs had probably not been touched by a human in a long time.

“You go to touch them, they back down, they’re very to themselves, it’s a shame to see that,” he said.

The Bissell Pet Foundation came and took care of the majority of the animals from the first raid, vaccinating them and taking them to safety.

The owner of the dogs wants to retain the 11 dogs from the most recent raid. There will be a bond set and it will be assessed if she can get those 11 animals back.

If she can’t get them back, they will be put up for adoption.

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