More than 90 dogs and puppies rescued from horror conditions at house

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Almost 100 terrified dogs and puppies have been rescued from a single property. The 96 Shih Tzus were given up by the owner last week at a house in Torquay, Devon.

The dogs, aged between a week and 12 years old, were in terrible condition with flea and worm infestations and their fur matted with urine and faeces.

The animals, thought to be victims of puppy farming, have been taken in by a number of rescue centres across Devon and Cornwall.

Six of the dogs are being cared for by Woodside Animal Welfare Trust near Plympton in Devon.

Deputy manager Lisa Darcy said: “No matter how long you have worked in rescue, you are always shocked when you see an animal that has not been well cared for.

“There is the initial shock, then we focus on what we can do to help them. It is totally frustrating and heartbreaking.”

The Gables Cats and Dogs Home at Plymouth has taken in 23 of the dogs.

A spokesperson said: “On arrival with us most of the dogs were extremely matted and covered in their own faeces as well as suffering from ammonia burns on their skin from living in their own urine.

“The tight mats have made it difficult for the dogs to move about and go to the toilet as well as causing incredibly sore spots on their skin.

“The huge flea burden has resulted in some of the dogs constantly scratching, leaving them with open sores from the self-inflicted wounds.

“The mothers of the puppies have been struggling to keep up with the demand of having to continually nurse litter after litter in these conditions.

“It is feared that it may already be too late for the weakest of the little puppies, but we are doing everything we possibly can to keep the puppy alive.”

Deputy manager Ruth Rickard described the situation as “truly heartbreaking”.

She said: “When we were contacted about these dogs I could not believe help was needed with yet another puppy farm, it was truly heartbreaking.

“These traumatised dogs have to suffer such terrible conditions purely for money. It is so frustrating to see how easy it still is for breeders to get away with it.

“I am glad we are able to give these dogs the love, care and attention they deserve,

“And our priority is to carefully remove the matted fur and give them the support and treatment they need to go on to find new loving homes.”

Eleven of the dogs are now in the care of the RSPCA’s Cornwall branch.

A spokesperson said: “Our hearts are breaking for these dogs, but we’re determined to give them the future that they deserve.”

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