BLOOMFIELD, Conn. (WTNH) — A kennel owner and dog breeder in Bloomfield was arrested on animal cruelty charges Tuesday. Thursday, officials and members of the community sounded off about what happened.
Over the course of the last couple of weeks, police say they received several complaints of dozens of animals allegedly kept outside in freezing temperatures at the Star Mountain Kennel.
When police investigated, they found the facility not only did not have a valid kennel license, but there were over 40 animals living there in conditions that violate state law.
The animals were relocated to a veterinary facility and the owner of the kennel, Margaret Boisture, was arrested on animal cruelty charges.
Police say Boisture opened a kennel without the proper licenses, lied about vaccinating the dogs for rabies and other diseases, and let them live in filth.
Thursday’s town hall meeting was about the state of the town, but dozens of people showed up to talk about the kennel, the owner, and the dogs that were taken off the property. Supporters of Boisture say she runs a respected kennel, while neighbors say good kennel or not, you have to follow the rules.
“There are a lot of rules you have to follow to do this; it’s not just grab a whole bunch of dogs, put them in a building, and come out with puppies…And go from there. It was frustrating to know that they were in that condition, but I am glad that it is no longer the case.”Jay Everle/Bloomfield
Mary Walters, Boisture’s mother, showed up at the Town Council meeting to defend her daughter. She says she was there the morning the police took the dogs from her daughter’s kennel and “there was no filth.”
Jonathan Waterman, Boisture’s son, told News 8 that all his mother loves her dogs and loves to show them off at dog shows: “Her dogs are her life.”
Her son defended her at the Town Council meeting, holding up signs of support along with dozens of other supporters.
Police say of the 43 dogs on the property, many were well cared for and meticulously groomed, but there were 15 dogs that had to be removed because of the deplorable conditions.
“We remove them, brought them to a veterinary clinic, they were treated for a number of ailments, they were washed and cleaned and because, their coats were… They were very dirty.”Chief Paul Hammick, Bloomfield Police Department
People in the neighborhood say it’s very difficult to live near the kennel because of the number of dogs and the conditions in which they see them.
“Once the findings were released, and in all honesty, their opinion shouldn’t even be allowed to be brought up, because that’s not falsified information, it’s what they found, and to me it’s not right.”Jay Everle, kennel neighbor
Chief Hammick echoed Everle’s sentiment, telling News 8 they based their arrest and charges on photographic evidence from the scene.
“All the officers have body cameras, so we can’t go and make this stuff up.”Chief Paul Hammick, Bloomfield Police Department
Thursday Boisture is free on bail.