Animal shelter in need of donations after kennel raid
by Michelle Babcock
July 18, 2014 12:37 AM | 4082 views | 5 5 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Lori Ancelet, right, holds and calms one of the dogs that was rescued Tuesday, while Evans gives the sick dog medical attention. Each of the hundreds of dogs taken from the kennel Tuesday will have to be examined and medically evaluated.<br>Staff/Michelle Babcock
Lori Ancelet, right, holds and calms one of the dogs that was rescued Tuesday, while Evans gives the sick dog medical attention. Each of the hundreds of dogs taken from the kennel Tuesday will have to be examined and medically evaluated.
Staff/Michelle Babcock
CANTON — After taking in more than 350 dogs seized in a puppy kennel raid Tuesday, the Cherokee County Animal Shelter is in need of donations.

Susan Garcia, director of the Cherokee Animal Shelter, said the community response has been wonderful so far and thanked everyone who had already donated, adding the shelter still needs specific donations to help with the influx of animals.

“I want stuff specific to this incident,” Garcia explained. “We need stuff we can use, not stuff we have to put up … If we get stuff that’s not going to help us, it takes time for us to put it away and find space to store it.”

The shelter had to close Wednesday as staff helped care for the hundreds of dogs seized from Heavenly Kennel off Cumming Highway on Tuesday, after authorities say owner Joy Wise failed to provide proper care for the animals, despite warnings from the Cherokee County Marshal’s Office in May.

Although the shelter resumed business operation Thursday, Garcia said taking care of all the dogs was “still overwhelming.”

While the cat viewing area was still open to the public, the dog pens were off limits as the shelter continued to house hundreds of dogs from the raid.

Garcia said the dogs, many of which are pregnant or had recently given birth to puppies, will remain in the shelter’s care until the issue is settled in court.

At the animal shelter Thursday, in a matter of about 10 minutes, the front desk received six phone calls from people inquiring into adoption of the seized dogs.

“No animals are currently available for adoption,” Garcia said.

When the dogs become available for adoption, they will be posted online at and announced through the shelter’s Facebook webpage, Garcia explained.

For now, Garcia said the best way for residents to help while the animal shelter houses an excess of animals is to donate money and needed supplies.

“We need newspapers,” she said, adding slick glossy advertisement pages do not work. “But we need them unfolded. We have to stop and unfold it … If we get unfolded newspaper, it goes right in.”

Specific items can be ordered and shipped to the shelter through an online wish list created on Amazon, which can be found online at

“We prefer they look at our wish list for this so we don’t get stuff we don’t need,” Garcia explained, adding the wish list includes items specifically needed for the hundreds of rescue dogs taken from the kennel.

Wise was cited in May for 264 animal cruelty offenses, 264 animal neglect offenses and a violation of county ordinance for operating the kennel without a business license, court records show.

When county marshal officers went to the property Tuesday for a compliance check — to see if Wise had heeded officer’s warnings to improve conditions and give the dogs proper vaccinations — interim Chief Marshal Kevin Roach said conditions had actually gotten worse and there were even more dogs at the kennel.

Wise pleaded not guilty in magistrate court Tuesday and the case was transferred to the State Court of Cherokee County after she requested a jury trial, Roach said.

Animal control, officers, shelter staff and others went back to the property on Cumming Highway Tuesday, afternoon, and began seizing the animals in an operation that lasted into the early morning hours Wednesday.

No arrests had been made Wednesday, but Roach said the investigation was ongoing.

Roach said the Marshal’s Office plans to look into where the puppies might have been sold, and whether or not any were sold to pet stores.

For those who would like to donate, monetary contributions can be made online through the animal shelter’s website,

Comments-icon Post a Comment
July 18, 2014
To those who feel they need to "purchase" a puppy: Forced to produce litter after litter in a filthy wire cage with no access to sunlight or green grass, no veterinary care, no grooming, no loving touch from a human. These dogs languish for years in deplorable conditions. The mother dogs are bred until they can no more and then are disposed of (killed).

Oh sure, they post cute pictures of their puppies on their website, but do you really know what goes on in these puppy mills? Try searching the name of the person or pet store you are buying from first! If a breeder does not let you see the parents of the dog, wants to meet you away from their home or is willing to ship the dog to you, a huge red flag should be waving in front of you! Are they licensed with Dept of Agriculture? Will they even tell you? There is one well known pet store that will bold face lie to you and tell you they get their puppies from AKC breeders. Some do, but, they come from puppy mills just like this one and this is what you are supporting. If you don't have a problem paying hundreds of dollars for a dog you have never seen then you won't mind spending hundreds of dollars on the Vet care it will need from being inbred or have multiple health and psychological issues. As far as a puppy being AKC registered, the AKC supports puppy mills. That piece of paper means nothing !

When will Dept of Agriculture start taking this issue seriously? This mill was not licensed, if it wasn't for the death of the purchaser's puppy no one would ever have known. If the well known pet store is aware of these backyard breeders then they should be fined as well. They are accessories to the crime. If they turn a blind eye for the sake of their almighty profits they are just as guilty.

Bottom line folks, there are hundreds of pure bred dogs dying in Georgia shelters everyday. There are hundreds of pure bred rescue groups who will spend their last dime saving that designer dog on it's last day at animal control. Those with more money than brains will not step foot in a county shelter because they have to have a designer puppy mill puppy, these are the people that need to know there is an alternative. Google PUPPY MILLS, Google that pet store. Google it until you see the ugly truth!

The time has come to shut these greedy money makers down. The only way to do this is to just say NO to a puppy mill puppy.
Sybil Mae
July 18, 2014
Dear Anonymous,

The people working to groom, vet, feed and shelter these poor dogs are stretched very thin and I am sure they are exhausted. Don't criticize them for not expressing their needs more eloquently. Their concern to meet the needs of these poor dogs. They do not have the extra staffing,volunteers or space available to sort through items to distribute all over the country. Bless them for their dedication and caring in an emergency situation.
July 18, 2014
More than 350 dogs seized and no arrest have been made? Are you kidding me?
July 18, 2014
I am the hugest dog lover known to mankind. At first when reading this article, I was taken aback and insulted by the statement, "I want stuff specific to this incident. We need stuff we can use, not stuff we have to put up--if we get stuff that’s not going to help us, it takes time for us to put it away and find space to store it.” That just sounded very ungrateful to me. However, reading further I saw they want unfolded newspapers...a huge hint. But by unfolded and no glossies, do you mean unfolded all the way out, or do you mean unfolded horizontally? I will take this hint forever in my life that I save newspapers for animal clinics and nobody ever asked me to unfold them. I will gladly do so if you explain what I need to do. And if people are sending stuff they don't need, could you be more kind to say maybe, "We will pass along what we don't need because there are dogs in need in shelters all over America that might need the things you send that we don't need?" And where the H have officials in Cherokee County been that this place was sited in May for 264 animal cruelty offenses, yet it took them until almost the end of July to seize these dogs? Last, be sure to take every penny the people own that did this now and every penny they will ever earn in the future. Society can't make them live in cages and breed for punishment, but society CAN make them know what it feels like to be an OBJECT. And ban them from animal ownership for life. I hope to see a "kinder," less angry post in the future telling us what we need to do. Keep in mind that people are very leary of government spending and as much as they seem to care, Animal Control is still government spending. Let us know what we can spend our actual dollars on without sending a check to the government that decides how to spend our money. I will send hundreds. Tell me what kind of dog food that I can buy (for xx dollars in comparison to the government spending xxxx dollars on the same dog food I can buy because it went through the government). I commit to one thousand on dog food to start. Just to start.
July 18, 2014
Since it wasn't real obvious in the story, here is the amazon wish list link again:

Also, when you are up to your eyeballs in sick, hungry, helpless animals, you might just forget your manners just a little bit. These folks are in the trenches doing the hard work, not just sitting behind a keyboard critiquing what others say and how they say it.

Animal rescuers give their whole lives to the animals and sometimes don't have a lot left over for the human niceties. Be kind to them and give them some slack.

Thank you to all you folks working so hard for these poor little critters.

And everyone, please adopt, don't buy from pet stores. Get educated on where those cute little puppies come from.
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