PELHAM — Six puppies, their mom and dad were all smiles Thursday when Animal Control Officer Allison Caprigno stopped by their home.
“They did the usual puppy playful behavior,” Caprigno said. “I held them and cuddled them, they are playful and cute and healthy. They are well socialized for 9-weeks- old.”
Caprigno made the house-call to the Pelham residence off Route 38 to evaluate the conditions of puppies that were being kept outside in a caged-in area. A photo of the dogs was posted online alleging they were kept in poor conditions.
Police responded to the scene and found nothing criminal, and found the owner to be sincere and helpful, Caprigno said.
“We’re not finding anything criminally wrong,” she said. “Facebook is great for a lot of things, I had a lost dog and its owner was there in 10 minutes, " she said. "But people are saying nasty things about this, and you need to treat humans kindly too.”
Caprigno reiterated nothing was criminally wrong, and the puppies’ owner sincerely cared about them.
A reporter went to check out the puppies Wednesday. As the reporter approached the above-ground kennel the puppies scrambled to get to a position to where they could be pet.
The puppies are being housed with their mother and father in a shaded area attached to a garage. There is a doggy-door for the animals to go inside the garage to cool off if they want. A large blue bowl of water was filled at the time for the dogs to drink out of. There was also a pen in the grass near the kennel for the dogs to play in.
Caprigno explained that above-ground kennels are one possible way to house dogs, and the elevation actually helps keep the dogs clean and healthy.
“Puppies poop wherever they want,” she said. “With the elevated kennel, the puppy isn’t sitting in its own urine and feces.”
Elevated outdoor kennels might not be the norm in Pelham, which may have been some cause for concern, Caprigno said. However, “It is the norm in the hunting (and) sporting world,” she said.
She knows there might also be some heightened concern because of the hot weather approaching this weekend, and Caprigno said people should not be keeping their dogs in unoccupied cars with temperatures expected to be nearing 100 degrees Saturday.
“Cars are different than an open kennel outside, they are getting the breeze and getting the shade,” Caprigno said.
The puppies’ owner has been breeding hunting dogs for a few doggie generations and has no criminal history of animal abuse.
“He’s a very well versed dog-owner who has had sporting dogs for years,” Caprigno said, adding the owner is keeping three of the puppies. “They’ll be out hunting rabbits soon.”