Humane society seizes dogs, other animals from couple

The dogs were flea-infested and had no fresh water.
HERMITAGE, Pa. -- The Humane Society of Mercer County, backed by Hermitage police, seized 18 dogs from a home in the 1300 block of Dutch Lane.
Cyndi Sankey, humane agent for the society, said a woman living in the house had been claiming to be a humane society representative and was "rescuing" dogs on behalf of the agency.
In reality, the woman has no affiliation with the society, Sankey said, adding she plans to file criminal charges against the woman for posing as a humane society representative and for cruelty to animals.
A man living at the same house will also face cruelty to animals charges. Sankey said he owns four of the dogs.
Poor conditions: All of the animals were "in deplorable shape," Sankey said. They were flea-infested, had no fresh water, no adequate veterinary care and no licenses, she said.
She also seized four cockatiels that were being kept in a single, small cage.
Three cats and two rats in a cage were left in the home, Sankey said.
She said the humane society had been hearing about the woman for months but was unable to track her down until a dog in quarantine at the Shenango Valley Animal Shelter for biting a boy was taken to the woman by its owner.
Sankey said neither she nor police searched the house but the residents brought all of the animals outside for them to see around 1 p.m. Wednesday.
The seized animals were taken to the Shenango Valley Animal Shelter, and the humane society will seek to gain legal ownership of them and then find them new homes, Sankey said.