Three local pet stores raided by Humane Society
SAN DIEGO (CNS) – The owner of two San Diego pet stores and one in
Oceanside was under investigation Wednesday for possibly mistreating animals being
kept for sale, animal welfare officials said.
Search warrants were served at the three stores and at a private
residence in El Cajon Tuesday “following a lengthy investigation related to
the health and safety of the animals in the owner's care,” said Kelli
Herwehe, a spokeswoman for the San Diego Humane Society and Society for the
Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
The pet stores involved were Pet Place in Rolando, Puppy Stars in
Clairemont Mesa and Naedeen's Puppies in Oceanside. A grassroots group that
calls itself the San Diego Animal Defense Team has been protesting the stores
since last August and filed complaints with the county, calling the stores
local puppy mills.
Animals from the stores were taken to the San Diego Humane Society,
where they will be kept “as evidence,” Herwehe said.
“Any potential charges that may be pressed against the owner of the pet
stores will be determined based on the condition of the animals, and the
evidence that is being collected…,” Herwehe said.
She declined to release additional details, including the pet store
owner's name, on grounds that “an active investigation” is in progress.