Nicole Labombard, owner of Paws R Us Kennel, proclaiming her ‘shock’ after the raid
A judge in the Paws R Us case (the largest Canadian puppy mill seizure in our country’s history) has declared Paws R Us to “be a puppy mill”.
This is big news on more than one front. Most importantly, it means that the seized dogs, who now total more than 600, can finally be placed.
Secondly, it provides vindication to Ontario resident Lorie Gordon, who was ruled to have slandered Paws R Us when she referred to them as a “puppy mill” on an on line message board in 2008. Ms. Gordon had purchased an apparently unhealthy puppy from Paws R Us, and was speaking out against them in hopes of dissuading other potential customers from purchasing puppies from them.
The judge in the case ruled that Lorie Gordon owed Paws R Us “$14000 on top of legal expenses”. Ouch. Gordon has been fighting the judgement in court ever since – hopefully, this most recent ruling will have settled the issue once and for all, although far too late for Gordon to recoup the thousands of dollars in legal fees she has spent defending herself, and the thousands she spent on the sick puppy she purchased from Paws R Us.
I’d like to hope that, now that the Quebec government finally has legal possession of the dogs from Paws R Us that they will consider reaching out to the numerous breed rescue groups (Eastern Canada French Bulldog Rescue included) who have offered their help.
In a precedent setting case Thursday, a judge in Quebec found Paws R Us to be a puppy mill after a guilty plea from the owners.
Nicole Labombard and her mother Charlene agreed to give up ownership of the dogs taken from their property in September.
Humane Society International raided the Clarendon farm, seizing more than 500 dogs living in deplorable conditions.
In exchage of the guilty plea, the former owners do not have pay the sheltering costs incurred.
Officials with HSI Canada say it cost $6,000 per day.
A judge ruled the Labombard family, which operated the puppy mill, will lose custody of 607 dogs and have to pay a fine.