ARL gets $100K grant to help rehabilitate dogs from southern Iowa puppy mill case


DES MOINES, Iowa — Hundreds of dogs are being taken from cages in southern Iowa and distributed to animal rescue operations around the Midwest right now.

The Animal Rescue League of Iowa and the ASPCA are spearheading the rescue operation in the town of Seymour. A USDA licensed dog breeder there has agreed to give up all of his dogs after being notified of nearly 200 violations by the USDA.

Authorities found improperly disposed of dead animals on the property and dogs in cages suffering from a number of ailments. Animal rescue operations from surrounding communities and states are offering up their services and taking in some of the dogs.

Thursday morning, the ARL of Iowa said it received a $100,000 grant from the ASPCA to help with the dogs and those funds are already going to good use. Dogs received some rehabilitation services right away. That includes anything from water therapy to regain the strength to walk to leash training.

“Remarkably, from the time that these animals were removed from these very loud, overcrowded conditions on scene that is really hard to talk about…to the time that they were in the arms of somebody that they knew they could trust and would care for them. Some of them immediately came out of their shells. I mean, in some of the puppies were wagging their tails and I mean, I cannot tell you how heartwarming that was to see. Now there are dogs on the opposite end of the spectrum, adults who do not know how to be dogs,” said Joe Stafford, Incident Commander/Director of Animal Services for the ARL.

There’s no word yet on when and where the dogs from the rescue will go up for adoption.

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