MCSO investigating animal abuse case in Mesa involving 70 animals

Posted at 12:06 PM, Nov 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-01 23:25:19-05

The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office is looking into an animal abuse case in east Mesa.

The investigation took place at a home near Hawes Road and Southern Avenue on Wednesday.

According to authorities, the homeowners surrendered 70 animals. The animals included 15 breeds of dogs, birds, lizards, hedgehogs, spiders and snakes.

"I don't think we've ever seized such a combination of animals as this one, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio said.

Based on a veterinarian's report, charges could be expected against the three adults who live at the house because many of the animals appeared to have been malnourished.

Additionally, the home was covered in feces and garbage, a MCSO spokesperson said.  

"They are in small crates; no water during the day," Arpaio said. "They can't get out to eat so this is a very serious abuse of animals." 

Investigators suspect that the owners were planning on selling the animals. 

Neighbor Debby Kepp explained that she just moved to the area but has met the homeowners who own a mobile dog grooming business called Misha's Pawz 'n Claws. 

"I've ridden my bike past their house many times and I've never heard animal noises," Kepp said.

Wednesday night ABC15 talked to two of the people who live inside the home. They would only say that the animals were not mistreated. 

Maricopa County's MASH Unit, which cares for animals removed from abuse cases, has posted a wish list of items needed after taking in the several dozen pets. Those who would like to help out by buying some of the things on the list can do so by clicking here.

An investigation into the incident is ongoing.