Howard County Police charged a Woodbine couple with more than 100 counts of animal cruelty Tuesday, alleging they were running a puppy mill out of their basement.
Between August and September, Howard County Animal Control officers removed more than 50 animals — including turtles, miniatures horses, a parrot and a donkey — from the puppy mill, police said.
After receiving a tip from a concerned citizen, animal control officers went to the Woodbine home where they found “unsanitary conditions.”
Candace Elizabeth Berry, 66, and Glenn Andrew Hopple, 58, both of the 16400 block of Frederick Road, were charged with failing to provide space, shelter, sufficient food and veterinary care to the animals, police said.
By failing to do so, the couple caused “unnecessary pain and suffering” to the animals, according to police.
An animal control officer Sheri Fox said in a video provided by the police department that many of the 54 animals removed suffered from hair and skin loss, fleas, tumors, ear infections, long nails and were underweight.
Many of the animals have received veterinary care and are available for adoption; however, some young puppies and their mothers are still not available. Some of the animals already have been adopted.
“One seriously ill puppy did not survive,” police said.
In August, eight miniature horses and a donkey suffering from severe malnutrition were removed from the home and were placed at Days End Horse Farm in Lisbon.
Hopple and Berry do not have attorneys listed in online court records. They are scheduled to appear in Howard County District Court on Nov. 21.
Of the 100-plus counts, each could carry 90 days in jail and up to a $1,000 fine.
The Howard County charges come a day after a Hampstead woman, Laura S. Filler, pleaded guilty to 11 felony counts of aggravated animal cruelty in a case related to a Carroll County puppy mill, where officials rescued 27 dogs living in squalid conditions and discovered another 27 dogs dead on the property. A trial is pending for John James Roberts, also of Hampstead, in that case.
In May, animal control seized 165 animals from the Animal Welfare Society of Howard County after receiving a citizen tip about unsanitary conditions.
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Information on how to donate and a list of adoptable animals in Howard County is available at www.howardcountymd.gov/Departments/Police/Animal-Control.