Over 60 Australian Shepherds were seized this afternoon in a raid on a suspected puppy mill at the Murfreesboro, NC home of a registered sex offender, according to a report published today on the WITN website. Terry Shinaberry, who has been on the NC sex offender list since 1999, was charged with one count of animal cruelty.
According to the article, 13 of the dogs were puppies. Apparently an investigation was launched when a complaint was made by an individual who bought a dog from Shinaberry who discovered the dog was in poor health when they took it in for a vet check.
Kim Alboum, NC state director for the Humane Society of the US stated:
"We've been called in by the Hertford County Sheriff's Department to address this situation, we're not exactly sure what we have here, the gentleman claims to be a rescue but we know there has been dogs that have been bred here on this property.”
According to reports, some of the dogs are in poor condition. A number of them are emaciated; others have eye infections or are missing limbs.
A neighbor told WITN that he had seen the dogs being abused by Shinaberry. The neighbor, Melvin Herman, described the alleged abuse to WITN:
"Taking a pipe and hitting dogs with pipes, dogs that attack each other and kill them and then he burns them in the backyard. He put a fence around it that's back there now."
The raid was conducted by the Hertford County Sheriff's department, with assistance from the Humane Society of the US, the Guilford County Animal Shelter, the Virginia Beach SPCA, the Norfolk SPCA, and the SPCA of Northeastern North Carolina.