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Authorities bust Upshur County puppy mill

By Glenn Evans
March 30, 2012 at 10 p.m.

Upshur County sheriff's deputies seized 28 small-breed dogs Friday afternoon at what they described as a puppy mill.

"We actually discovered this through following a burglary and theft call this morning," Lt. Freddie Fitzgerald said about 3:30 p.m. as he and officers were en route to serve a seizure warrant at a home just south of Gilmer on Texas 155.

The dogs, all Chihuahua and Yorkshire terrier breeds, were living in cages stacked on top of each other, Fitzgerald said. Most of the dogs were inside the residence.

The lieutenant said criminal charges are likely for the dogs' owner.

"We'll continue the investigation after today," he said. "And we're looking into cruelty to animal charges against the owner."

He declined to give the owner's name until the investigation wraps up.

He also did not immediately know how long the breeding-and-selling operation had been in business. He added it is unlikely the operation would have been discovered if not for the other investigation.

"We had two businesses broken into last night," he said. "That investigation led us to this particular house, and we discovered the animals in the house."



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