For Immediate Release:
August 22, 2023
Brittney Williams 202-483-7382
Juneau County, Wis. – A damning report just released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reveals that dogs suffered from matted fur and were held in crowded enclosures that reeked of urine at a local operation that churns out dogs for sale near Elroy and is operated by Carla Brovont. In response, PETA rushed a letter to Juneau County District Attorney Kenneth Hamm asking him to investigate the facility—which has confined as many as 213 dogs—and file applicable charges against those responsible for the neglect.
According to the report, on July 18, a USDA inspector saw three dogs with matted fur, a frequently painful condition that can cause skin infections. The same day, the inspector noted a “strong ammonia smell” in “multiple areas.” The inspector also found eight puppies crowded into a single enclosure that afforded them barely more personal space than the length of their own bodies.
“Cramming dogs into urine-soaked enclosures and leaving them to languish with matted fur are standard procedures in miserable mills like this one, where animals are treated as nothing but commodities,” says PETA Vice President of Evidence Analysis Daniel Paden. “PETA is calling on Juneau County authorities to prosecute those responsible for this neglect and urges everyone never to buy any animal from a breeder or pet store and to always adopt from a shelter instead.”
This facility has a history of failing dogs: Last year, a federal inspector documented that a dog had an open sore and hair loss—and according to a report, Brovont was aware of the condition but failed to contact a veterinarian. The inspector also documented that 12 other dogs were kept in enclosures without adequate space.
PETA is pursuing charges under state law because the USDA doesn’t render relief or aid to animals during its inspections and these violations carry no federal criminal or civil penalties.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.
PETA’s letter to Hamm follows.
August 22, 2023
The Honorable Kenneth Hamm
Juneau County District Attorney
Dear Mr. Hamm:
I hope this letter finds you well. I’m writing to request that your office (and the proper law-enforcement agency, as you deem appropriate) investigate and, as suitable, file criminal charges against those responsible for neglecting dogs at a breeding facility operated by Carla Brovont at N. 3835 Nelson Rd., near Elroy. PETA hopes investigators will visit the facility with a veterinarian who has expertise in canine health and welfare so that they can identify any animals in need of care and opine on the conditions of and for as many as 213 dogs there.
A U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) inspector documented neglect at the facility in the attached reports, the latest of which was just made public. On July 18, the inspector found three dogs whose fur was “matted up around their ears and necks,” which “can be painful” and “cause skin infections.” The same day, the inspector noted a “strong ammonia smell”—indicating a lack of cleaning and sanitation—in “multiple areas,” including a puppy housing building and a room in which two adult dogs were confined. The inspector also found eight puppies—each of whom was 16 to 21 inches long—in a single enclosure, where each had just about 21-by-21 inches of floor space.
On November 28, 2022, the inspector found that a dog named Evie “had an open sore with hair loss” on one of her feet. According to the report, Brovont “had observed” the condition but had not contacted a veterinarian. That day, the inspector found two adult dogs—each at least 30 inches long—in an enclosure affording each just over 34-by-34 inches of floor space. Another enclosure gave 10 puppies—who were up to 16 inches long—less than 19-by-19 inches of space.
These findings may violate Wisconsin Statute §§ 951.02 and 951.14. The latter requires that enclosures for animals be “adequately ventilated,” be “periodic[ally] clean[ed] to remove excreta,” and “provide sufficient space.” The USDA renders no aid or relief whatsoever to animals on site, and these reports carry no criminal or civil penalties and don’t preempt criminal liability under state law for neglecting animals. If you’d like to learn more about the agency’s findings, please see the contact information for its office in Riverdale, Maryland, here. Thank you for your time and consideration.
Vice President of Evidence Analysis