Zack was one of about 150 Jack Russell Terriers and Shiba Inus we rescued from a Michigan puppy mill earlier this year. After rescue, he needed surgery on his eyes—but he also needed extensive behavior help.
ASPCA behavior expert Kristen Collins was at the rescue to help remove dogs from the property, and she noticed Zack right away. He shook violently as he crouched in terror, his eyes wide. When Collins approached his enclosure, he bolted for the broken crate that was his only shelter from the elements.
"He looked like the most fearful dog on the property," Collins remembers. She knew Zack's best hope was intensive treatment at our Rehab Center for puppy mill and hoarding survivors.
When Zack arrived at the Rehab Center, his behavior was no different than the first time Collins saw him quake with fear at her approach. He cowered in the back of his space, ears flat and body low. And yet—after a few days, though he remained skeptical about human touch, Zack began to tentatively wag his tail at the sight of familiar people.
Today, Zack has been adopted and is part of a loving family. We wanted to show you the amazing progress Zack made during his time with us—please watch his video below.
Last week the ASPCA helped remove more than 150 dogs from a large-scale, substandard breeding facility in Michigan. Just one week later, we’re happy to report we’ve been able to place the dogs with our amazing shelter partners. Midwest: That means some of these dogs could be in a shelter near you!
The following response partners accepted dogs from this case:
• Roscommon County Animal Shelter of Prudenville, Michigan • Medina County SPCA of Medina, Ohio • Animal Humane Society of Golden Valley, Minnesota • Kent County Animal Control of Grand Rapids, Michigan • Humane Society of West Michigan of Grand Rapids, Michigan • Michigan Humane Society of Rochester Hills, Michigan • HANDDS of Traverse City, Michigan
Some of the more fearful and undersocialized dogs have been transferred to the ASPCA Behavioral Rehabilitation Center at St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center in Madison, New Jersey, for further treatment.
Before the transports, ASPCA responders cared for and provided the dogs with veterinary services at the Roscommon County Animal Shelter. Each dog was carefully evaluated by the ASPCA Anti-Cruelty Behavior team before being transferred to the rescue groups.
“Thanks to our accommodating partner shelters, we were able to find placement for all of these dogs in just one week,” says Kathryn Destreza, Director of Investigations for the ASPCA Field Investigations and Response Team. “These dogs have been living in miserable conditions their entire lives. We are excited to see them move on to shelters so quickly, and soon, to loving homes.”
The ASPCA is on the ground in Lake City, Michigan, assisting with the removal and sheltering of more than 150 Jack Russell Terriers, Shiba Inus and other dogs and puppies from two separate locations of a substandard, large-scale breeding facility.
The removal of the animals from JRT John's Jack Russell and Shiba Inu Kennel is the result of a civil action, prompted by a violation of Michigan’s Dog Law. The ASPCA is assisting the Missaukee County Sheriff’s Office and the Roscommon County Animal Shelter with the case. PetSmart Charities® has also generously provided critical supplies for the sheltering and transport of the animals.
The dogs were discovered living in outdoor enclosures with little protection from the elements. Many had no access to clean drinking water or proper shelter, with plastic carriers being their only refuge from the elements. We believe the facility to be a puppy mill—a large-scale, commercial breeding operation where profit is given priority over the well-being of the animals.
Up next: Dogs requiring medical examinations are being transported to a nearby temporary shelter, where they will receive veterinary care from the ASPCA’s medical team, led by Field Investigations and Response Medical Director Dr. Sarah Kirk. Once medical exams are complete, the ASPCA Anti-Cruelty Behavior Team will begin behavior evaluations of dogs at the temporary shelter, and our Partnership Manager will beginworking with response partners to determine placement options.
If you’d like to adopt: Dogs who are medically and behaviorally ready will immediately be placed with ASPCA response partners including Medina County SPCA (Medina, Ohio) and Animal Humane Society (based in Golden Valley, Minnesota), which are also supporting the sheltering operation and will help provide daily care for the animals.
“We are pleased to aid the Missaukee County Sheriff’s Office and Roscommon County Animal Shelter by providing expertise and resources to support the case and removing the dogs from this situation,” says Kathryn Destreza, Investigations Director of the ASPCA Field Investigations and Response team, adding that we look forward to helping place dogs in loving homes.