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Tue Apr 10, 2012 20:48


Owner of 350+ dogs: 'They weren't sick'
The owner of more than 350 dogs taken from an Allegan County
The Allegan County Animal Shelter treated 353 Shih Tzu Supplies needed for confiscated dogs
More than 350 taken from Allegan County breeder
Updated: Tuesday, 10 Apr 2012, 6:22 PM EDT
Published : Tuesday, 10 Apr 2012, 12:49 PM EDT
By Steve Kelso
ALLEGAN, Mich. (WOOD) - The Allegan County Animal Shelter says it is overwhelmed as it tends to hundreds of dogs confiscated from a breeder.
The 353 Shih Tzu and Pomeranian dogs -- many covered in filth and feces -- were seized Monday and brought to the shelter, which is designed to hold 36 dogs.
Hundreds of volunteers just showed up Tuesday to help take care of the more than 350 dogs. The parking lot and grounds were packed with cars.
"I have never seen this parking lot so full," Julie Kowal of Wishbone Pet Rescue, who is helping to coordinate the effort to care for the dogs.
"I just heard it on the news this morning and felt like I had to clear some time in my day to do this," said volunteer Aimee Onderlinde.
And in the office, the phones were ringing off the hook as people volunteered time and supplies.
"It's more heartbreaking when we feel helpless, but at least we feel like we can do something," said Kalamazoo veterinarian Noreen Heikes.
She took the opportunity to teach her students about helping their communities.
"I was drowning in students wanting to help," she said. "I am really glad to see that these guys are already realizing that because they have skills, they can give back."
Volunteers said the dogs are good-natured.
"They are sweet dogs -- nobody tried to bite me. They just all know we are helping them," said volunteer Sharon Davis.
The shelter is still in need of vets and skilled groomers, but the everyday person can still do many of the chores that need to be done.
"We need people to come in and walk dogs, bathe dogs, clean dogs, wash dishes, do laundry -- the whole nine yards," said Kowal.
And supplies are still needed to help groom the animals before they can be adopted or taken to other shelters. Items including towels, blankets, food and grooming materials can be dropped off at the shelter.
The shelter said gas cards are also needed to help transport the dogs to other shelters and rescues.
By early Tuesday afternoon, the donations of food and supplies had outgrown the building -- the shelter needs a storage unit.
And by Tuesday afternoon, $4,000 has been raised to help the dogs.
-- For more information -- call the Allegan County Animal Shelter at 269.686.5112 -- a voicemail that is checked regularly
-- To adopt or foster these animals -- visit Allegan County Animal Shelter's Facebook page or its site at
Currently, the dogs will only go to approved animal shelters and rescues.
-- Drop off donations or send checks --
Allegan County Animal Shelter
2293 33rd Street
Allegan, MI 49010
-- To volunteer -- visit Wishbone Pet Rescue Alliance's website for more information
-- To donate cash visit Pay It Square's website
-- Send checks to --
Wishbone Pet Rescue
2293 33rd Street
Allegan, MI 49010
The Cheshire Township resident surrendered custody of the dogs. Animal Control is still investigating and it is unclear if anyone will face charges.
All content (c) Copyright 2000 - 2012 WOOD Television, Inc, a subsidiary of LIN Television Corporation. All Rights Reserved.


    • UPDATEKaren & Romeo, Wed Apr 11 19:31
      UPDATE: from: (snip) The owners of more than 350... more
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