Training Facility, or Dog Hell? A Trainer Is Charged with 55 Counts of Animal Cruelty
After a raid on Friday, authorities shut down a guard-dog-training kennel in Ohio. They rescued seven dogs at the Fairfield County facility, along with "dog remains" -- teeth and bones -- from other dogs, according to the Columbus Dispatch. Dogs at the kennel were living in unsanitary conditions without food or water, and some dogs were missing.
Dog trainer and kennel owner Cory W. Dewberry was charged with 55 counts of animal cruelty and 15 counts of animal abandonment. Some of the charges are related to "unidentifiable dead dogs."
Dewberry is being brought to justice thanks to a complaint brought by a single dog owner, Jennifer Yost, who said her dog was abused at Dewberry Family K-9 Kennel. She brought her 2-year-old German Shepherd, Wolfgang, to the kennel on Jan. 8, but said she had problems getting the dog back, and ultimately was able to retrieve the dog only after she threatened to go to the sheriff. It is unclear why she was having difficulty getting her dog back.
On March 6, she was finally able to retrieve Wolfgang. She was shocked at his condition.
According to the Dispatch, "Wolfgang had lost a lot of weight, his paws were injured from sitting in urine, and his teeth were stained from eating feces. He was aggressive around food, indicating that he hadn’t been fed well or had to fight other dogs for food. His body had wounds that appeared to be bite marks from another dog."
The Examiner reports that the dog had lost more than 45 pounds.
Yost took the dog to the police.
“I came to the conclusion that Mr. Dewberry is into dog fight(ing) or is extremely negligent,” Deputy Marty Norris wrote in his investigator notes.
Dewberry's lawyer Karen Phipps says he is innocent.
“He has never been in any kind of trouble before. This is a shocking event that’s come up,” she said.
Phipps says Dewberry has been a breeder and trainer for 20 years, and he has run the kennel for three years.
NBC4i.com found another woman who had taken her dog to Dewberry Family K-9 Kennel for training -- and she never saw her dog again. Bea Teifke claims Dewberry told her that her dog had run away, but now she's not so sure. Authorities expect more people to come forward as the investigation progresses.