Plattsburgh Northern Puppies pet shop owner Tammy Staley was arrested Wednesday, July 10 and charged with 20 counts of animal cruelty after police found sick and dead kittens in the back room of the store.
Staley, 33 of Plattsburgh, was arrested by Plattsburgh Police Department at 10 a.m. on July 10.
Lieutenant Scott Beebie with the city of Plattsburgh Police Department said Staley was arrested after members of the state Agriculture and Markets Division of Animal Industry made a spot visit to the store to inspect the property.
“When they went into the quarantine area in the back room of the store they saw a few kittens that were possibly deceased and others that looked sick,” Beebie said. “By law members of the Agriculture and Market can come into any facility that sells companion animals and inspect it at any time, it’s basically an open house.”
Members of Agriculture and Markets visited the Northern Puppies store on July 2, and later took 16 cats to be examined by a veterinarian at Eagles Nest Veterinary Hospital in Plattsburgh. Three cats died while at the veterinary hospital, bringing the total to five. Once the seized animals are healthy enough to leave the hospital, they will be placed in the care of the Elmore SPCA in Peru.
Beebie said Staley was arrested after medical tests on the kittens came back with the cause of death as intestinal parasite coccidia. Other health problems included ring worm, malnutrition, ear mites, flees, eye and respiratory infections.
Staley was also charged with not providing adequate living space for two chow dogs ages 2 and 7.
There were 32 dogs at the store at the time of the seizure, and at the time of Staley’s arrest 30 remained at the store. All have been deemed healthy by veterinarians.
Staley was released pending a court date on July 25 in Plattsburgh City Court. Each count of Animal Cruelty is a class “A” misdemeanor. Staley’s license to operate the pet store has been suspended pending an Agriculture and Markets hearing in Albany on July 16. Until that time, Northern Puppies is not allowed to sell any of the dogs remaining in the store. Northern Puppies can continue to sell non companion animals such as the fish, rabbits, reptiles and other animals at the store.