Medical assessments are being done on as many as 40 dogs that were seized from a home in the Calgary community of Marlborough Park on Thursday.
The estimated 35 to 40 dogs were removed from the home on Malvern Crescent N.E. by bylaw officers wearing Hazmat suits and masks.
They were found when officers were executing a warrant as part of an ongoing investigation, police said, but they didn’t reveal the nature of the investigation.
According to the Calgary Humane Society, the medical condition of the dogs isn’t as much of a concern for officials as the conditions they were living in.
“It really was the state of the home that necessitated the removal,” said Brad Nichols, senior manager with the animal cruelty investigations divisions.
“When you have that many animals and you’re not cleaning up after it, you end up with an excess amount of waste in the house — feces, urine — that contributes to the ammonia level and you end up with an overall unsanitary situation.”
Nichols said the conditions in the home would be “dangerous for any living being.”
“Living conditions where you’re potentially inviting vermin into a home as well, the respiratory aspect of having the ammonia in the home would be a problem healthwise,” he said.
Nichols said there is a possibility that animal cruelty charges could be laid.
“The charge would be causing or allowing an animal to be in distress — times 30 in this case,” he said.
“That comes with a potential of a maximum of $20,000 fine and up to a lifetime ban from owning animals.”
The dogs seized include puppies, adult dogs, and both small and large breeds, Nichols said. The humane society will be taking care of the medical assessments of the animals.
One neighbour, who said she used to dog sit for the man who lives in the home, told Global News she was concerned about the living conditions for the dogs.
“There were puppy pads everywhere because they didn’t really want them outside to do pee,” Ursla Walteck said.
“He said he was rescuing them from reserves and stuff like that and giving them a good home,” she said of the home’s resident.
Walteck said she did urge the homeowner to seek medical treatment for one puppy at least one time.
– With files from Cami Kepke