A Cookeville animal rescue organization has been aware of a Grundy County home puppy mill for the past nine years.
Over 250 dogs were rescued from the location over the weekend with conditions described as unlivable. All About Rescue and Fixin’ Volunteer Ariel Marengo said lack of support from law enforcement at the time only allowed for about 100 dogs to be saved.
“That is one of the worse situations that I have ever seen,” Marengo said. “And unfortunately, we were actually asked to help in that particular case nine years ago, but we, at the time, could not get law enforcement to get on board.”
Marengo said extreme large scale animal cruelty crimes like this is not common in the Upper Cumberland. Marengo said A.A.R.F sees more individual cases of abuse.
“I would say that there is definitely mental issues and unfortunately money,” Marengo said. “Money is definitely a factor when you are breeding and selling dogs. That particular individual had animals for sale on some of the local classified websites.”
Many times pet owners come across accidental litters. Then, those litters breed among themselves creating an overwhelming situation. Marengo said there are cost effective ways to avoid this.
“There are low cost spay and neuter clinics in our area,” Marengo said. “We also will help. If we end up accepting a litter of puppy or kittens, we will offer to get the parents of those fixed.”
Marengo said Putnam County is fortunate for its animal care facilities, but areas without that access come across animal disadvantages more often.