Monday, July 6, 2015
Alleged puppy mill in St. Anne raided, 80 dogs taken from owner
By: Dimitrios Kalantzis
A national animal rescue group, along with the Kankakee County Animal Control and Adoption Center, removed 80 dogs from an alleged puppy mill in St. Anne Tuesday morning, accusing the owner of leaving the animals in "neglectful conditions."
The dogs were both newborn puppies and adults of a variety of breeds, including Chihuahuas, Shih Tzus, Yorkshire Terriers and Poodles.
The rescue group, Animal Rescue Corps., said in a statement that the animals were "found crowded into small pens with plastic wire flooring, exposed to extremely high levels of ammonia."
The owner of Adrian's Puppy Paradise kennel on Illinois Route 1, Louise Gutierrez, is said to have willingly given up all the dogs there. A judge did sign off on a search warrant a day before the raid.
Reached by phone late Tuesday afternoon, Gutierrez did not comment.
Julie Boudreau, director of Kankakee County Animal Control, told The Daily Journal in March that she has been asking the state to inspect the St. Anne kennel with greater scrutiny going back to 2006. She said the state has too few investigators that are often overworked.
Around that time, Gutierrez denied wrongdoing and told the newspaper, "Every time somebody calls, they come in here, and they don't ever say they don't have food and water, they don't say my puppies are laying in waste. To tell the truth, I don't think they'd say that."
Puppy mills are breeding sites that typically restrict the space of its dogs and, according to welfare groups, are unsanitary and unsafe.
The dogs at Adrian's were "suffering from untreated and painful eye infections, respiratory conditions, and dental issues," Animal Rescue Corps. said in its statement.
"Closing down an operation of this scale takes an enormous amount of resources," Boudreau said in that same prepared statement. "By working with Animal Rescue Corps., who provided most of those resources, we did just that — we closed this notorious puppy mill down for good."
The dogs will be housed and cared for by Animal Rescue until they find shelter and rescue organizations around the country willing to adopt them.
It is not yet known what, if any, criminal charges Gutierrez's faces.