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82 Dogs Removed From Indiana Home

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By Brendan Giusti, Christian Post Reporter
January 16, 2012|7:47 am

A total of 82 dogs have been removed from an Indiana home over the course of a two-day seizure.

Animal control officers first removed 55 dogs from the home on Jan. 11, then returned one day later and took 27 more animals.

The seizure of the 82 dogs was cited as the worst case of animal hoarding seen by officials in the small town near Chesterton, Ind.

Chesterton is located about an hour outside of Chicago and is typically considered part of the Chicago metropolitan area.

Several dogs had to be put down after being taken to the Porter County Animal Shelter.

Several others have tested positive for canine parvovirus, which is a highly contagious virus that causes respiratory and cardiovascular failure in dogs, according to reports. The infected animals are being kept in isolation.

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Officials believe some of the dogs can still be saved, however.

Charges could be filed against the owners of the home and Donna Montoya, who was renting the northwest Indiana house.

Montoya, 50, could be charged with multiple counts of animal cruelty.

The recent move comes after residents complained to authorities in November. Neighbors told local health officials they were concerned animal waste could seep into their drinking water. The complaints sparked a visit by animal control officers.

Officers returned later and took seven small dogs infested with fleas, though Montoya was allowed to keep the remaining dogs.

Officials secured temporary housing in the shelter for the 82 dogs before returning and taking custody of the rest of the endangered animals.

Neighbors have reportedly been visiting the shelter with donations and blankets.

It is unclear why all the dogs were not removed during the visit on Jan. 11.

Two officials were treated for animal bites associated with removing the dogs, according to reports.

Montoya reportedly told officials she was in the right by keeping the animals and not turning them over to authorities in the area.

It is unclear when charges will be filed in the case.

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