DA: Dogs ate puppies at Crandon woman's feces-littered home - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

DA: Dogs ate puppies at Crandon woman's feces-littered home


CRANDON (WAOW) - A 52-year-old Crandon woman accused of 156 counts of animal abuse allowed puppies to be eaten by dogs that also ate a horse carcass and she lived in a home with up to 2 feet of dog feces on the floor, according to a criminal complaint.

"Adult dogs are trying to kill any (puppy) litter that is not theirs and the mothers are left to protect them alone," one woman who knew Patricia Kirker and was familiar with the conditions told investigators, the complaint said.

Kirker was charged Wednesday with six felony counts of mistreatment of animals causing death and 150 misdemeanor counts of intentionally mistreating animals, failure to provide them food and failure to provide them water. Her preliminary hearing is May 3.

The Forest County Sheriff's Department, with help from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, seized nearly 40 wolf dogs and some sickly horses from the property on Highway S March 17. Some dead animals were also found.

Three days before the seizure, Kirker was charged in a conspiracy to smuggle drugs into the county jail.

The probe of Kirker's animal care began in early February with a possible "puppy mill situation" and after more than 80 complaints were filed regarding the property between January 2016 and February, the complaint said.

Two women, ages 50 and 53 and unnamed in the complaint, provided details of what investigators called deplorable conditions that led to a search warrant being issued.

According to the complaint, the problems the two women reported included:

--Three puppies killed by other dogs and one eaten by the others dogs.

--Two horses kept in a trailer for more than three weeks.

--Dogs eating on a horse carcass in a horse pen.

--At least four horses and one pony died on the property since summer 2016.

--One to two feet of dog feces on the floor of Kirker's home.

--Dogs terrorizing the neighborhood, cornering one woman's 83-year-old mother and killing her cat.

--At least two dogs with embedded collars.

--Kirker kicked dogs, some biting her back.

--Chained dogs never got to eat.

--A presumably blind horse running into "trees and things."

On March 14, investigators were told Kirker was moving dogs to a possible new home in Plainfield, the complaint said.

Three days later, police searched the property, with an officer noticing one dog had porcupine needles in its snout and one was limping on three legs, the complaint said. The officer located one pail of water and one bag of food.

The officer also spotted a horse with hooves so overgrown the animal was not "walking on its hooves, rather skating on its knuckles," the complaint said.

An investigator for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals examined some of the dogs in pain or disfigured, concluding they suffered "months to years for the different ranges of mistreatment," the complaint said.

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