Dr. Sarah Beaty, a veterinarian who assisted in last weekend's rescue effort at 179 Sanderson Road, told a news agency that she saw a shed full of dead dogs at the property. She stated, “The smell was so bad that everyone inside had to wear gas masks."
The people running this breeding operation cared about one thing - money. The welfare of the dogs being exploited for profit was obviously not a concern given the condition that they were forced to exist in. Michael Ryder, an investigator with Guardians of Rescue, commented on the squalid conditions discovered at the Mercer property:
"The things that were taking place, and what we uncovered that was being done to these dogs was beyond disturbing. It was probably the worst in all the years we’ve seen in our investigations."
Individuals participating in the massive rescue effort found dogs suffering from eye and skin infections, malnutrition, and rotting teeth. And apparently the owner of this property, identified as Sandra Webb, has been charged with animal cruelty before. Webb, and her daughter Tabitha Nicole, were charged with 101 counts of cruelty to animals back in April 2000 when the authorities executed a search warrant at their home and found dogs living in squalor. The 2000 raid resulted in Tabitha and Sandra being found guilty of 48 charges of animal cruelty in December, and banned from owning dogs for 10 years.
But the cruel breeding practice did not stop. The most recent investigation into the activities at this property started when people reported buying sickly puppies through the Puppy Find website - the puppies were linked back to Tabitha, who was going by the name, Tabitha Doyle. Tabitha, and her "alleged" partner George, are accused of using fake names, phone numbers, and addresses, to sell puppies online.
Arrests, charges, and a mandate to never own animals in the future MUST happen and we need your support to persuade officials that the conditions found at 179 Sanderson Road warrant punishment! Tennessee needs better laws against puppy mill operations and we will push state officials to take a stand against puppy mill cruelty. Enough is enough!
Note: All individuals are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Update 9/21/2020: Read our letter to Prosecutor Nina Seiler here
Update August 2020: George Doyle, Tabitha Doyle, and Sandra Webb were indicted on August 3. The three are charged with 338 counts of cruelty to animals, and one count of tampering with evidence. The suspects have all entered not guilty pleas, and are due in court on October 20. Animal Victory will be in touch with Prosecutor Nina Seiler before the court date and update as we receive information.