EXETER, R.I. (WPRI) – State Police have charged two people with multiple counts of animal cruelty after finding animals living in deplorable conditions.
According to the State Police, Troopers were called for a noise complaint at 2572 Ten Road Road in Exeter on December 5. Neighbors said that the lights had been on for three days and there were dogs barking, but they could not reach the residents by phone. Troopers saw that there were cars in the driveway, so they entered the home to check on the residents.
The residents were not home, but Troopers found six papillion dogs inside the building, all of which were standing in small crates in their own waste with little water or food.
“The crates were just big enough for the animals, and they had feces and urine in them,” Sergeant David Bassignani of the Rhode Island State Police told Eyewitness News. “The dogs feet were raw and discolored from standing in the feces and the urine.”
Ten golden retrievers were found in the backyard in similar conditions.
“They definitely weren’t older dogs,” said Sergeant Bassignani. “They looked to be maybe, at the oldest, two or three.”
Troopers called Exeter animal control officers and removed sixteen dogs and one cat from the home the following day.
The residents, 62 year-old Donald Perkins and 58 year-old Kathleen Perkins, were found to be out of state on vacation and planning to return on December 11.
“They were definitely low end breeders,” says Sergeant Bassignani.
Their kennel’s website can be found online as Ceile Kennels.
On Friday, Troopers returned with warrants and arrested the couple. Both were charged with 17 counts of animal cruelty and released on $5,000; they will appear in Fourth District Court on December 16. The animals were taken by animal control.
According to State Police, the Rhode Island SPCA had tried to investigate a complaint regarding the animals’ conditions earlier in the year but the homeowners would not let them inside. Exeter animal control officers had also previously contacted the homeowners regarding similar complaints, but it wasn’t clear what the result of that contact was.