USDA inspectors photographed a Yorkie with an eye disorder at a facility owned by Andy Troyer in Fredericksburg, Ohio, in 2011 after the operator repeatedly failed to get adequate treatment for the dog. (Humane Society)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -
Hairless dogs, scabby and crawling with fleas. Puppies left in cold cages frozen solid and others left alone to die.
These are just a few cases revealed in the Humane Society of the United States' list of the worst puppy mills across the country.
Kansas and Missouri come out on top of the list.
The Canine Cruelty Prevention Act was passed in Missouri in 2011 to stop breeders from mistreating puppies. But it appears the problem still exists.
Twenty-two of the 101 dealers in the Humane Society's list of problem puppy mills are from Missouri, topping the list of worst breeders.
Coming in second was Kansas with 13, followed by Nebraska with 12. Arkansas and Iowa tied having six each. Most of the facilities in the report have since been cited by federal or state inspectors.
Johanna Steele, a breeder in Missouri, admitted to leaving a severely injured and nearly unresponsive Pomeranian named "Woofie" holding onto life for three days without taking him to a vet.
Then there was Missouri breeder Johnny Dake who was found with a dead 4-week-old Shih Tzu puppy frozen solid in an outside cage when temperatures were 9 degrees below zero.
According to the report, breeder Barbara Neubert admitted to slaughtering sick cattle from a local slaughterhouse in order to feed the raw meat to her dogs. The meat was found rotting with maggots in her kennels.
There was also a dealer in Kansas City, KS, that made the list. However, it did not fail any federal inspections, but the Better Business Bureau gave it a failing grade.
The Rock Creek Kennel website shows dozens of cute smiling dogs available for purchase but Michael Marks, who lives next door to where the kennel used to operate, says the animals were anything but happy.
"It was pretty awful, the smell and the noise. The dogs were barking all the time. We discovered there was like 60 puppies in the garage when we finally complained about it," Marks said.
The kennel in KCK is also on the list of the Humane Society of the United States' worst puppy mills in the country. The report accuses it and its alias, Clover Acres Farm, of operating without a license and selling sick animals. The two men who ran it were evicted from the property last year because of smell and noise complaints.
"I believe they were throwing dead puppies in the tree line to get rid of the ones that didn't make it. It was just horrible," Marks said.
The kennel is also unaccredited with the Better Business Bureau.
Daniel Reno who runs an animal rescue in Kansas, said unlicensed breeders create many problems for her shelter and others.
"There are a boatload of irresponsible breeders that are unregistered, their pets aren't registered and a bunch of irresponsible pet owners in general that contribute to the population of dogs in the shelter," Reno said.
Reno said potential buyers should always visit the shelter or breeder where they get their animal - that way they know it was treated well.
"Go into the kennel, go into the shelter, go into the breeder's house. Just go in and make sure that they are reputable," she said.
Rock Creek Kennel's website doesn't provide a specific current address. KCTV5 left a voicemail on the phone number posted there, but the company hasn't returned the call. The site still lists at least 20 dogs for sale.
The report also indicated that puppyfind.com is often linked to puppy mills, so be wary if you're extending your search for a furry friend to that site. Click here to see the full report.
Because of the recent laws and more public scrutiny, about 15 of last year's worst puppy mills appear to have closed their doors.
Copyright 2014 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
Wednesday, July 30 2014 7:45 AM EDT2014-07-30 11:45:17 GMT
It's not a disease and it's not contagious, but "Invisible Black Dog Syndrome" is a sad, real condition affecting local animal shelters. The term refers to the propensity of would-be-adopters walkingMore >
It's not a disease and it's not contagious, but "Invisible Black Dog Syndrome" is a sad, real condition affecting animal shelters. More >
Tuesday, July 29 2014 5:50 AM EDT2014-07-29 09:50:38 GMT
Copyright 2014 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.More >
Listeria is listed on the the baby's death certificate as an immediate cause of her death. Her mother, says that while she was pregnant, she ate food that was part of a recent, nation-wide Listeria recall.More >
Tuesday, July 29 2014 6:55 PM EDT2014-07-29 22:55:24 GMT
A 24-year-old man has been charged in connection with the June 14 shooting that killed Christopher Mondaine in a parking lot near Sixth Street and Grand Avenue.More >
A 24-year-old man has been charged in connection with the June 14 shooting that killed Christopher Mondaine in a parking lot near Sixth Street and Grand Avenue, Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker announced Tuesday.More >
Tuesday, July 29 2014 10:09 PM EDT2014-07-30 02:09:00 GMT
KU and Washburn University among five more schools added to the list of colleges and universities under scrutiny for how they handled investigations into sexual assaults.More >
The University of Kansas and Washburn University are joining a list that college officials won't be bragging about. They are among five more schools added to the list of colleges and universities under investigation for how they handled investigations into sexual assaults.More >