Shirley Osterman
  • Owners: Osterman, Shirley (Shirley Brown)
  • Business name: Osterman Farms
  • Address: 1100 14th St.
  • City, State Zip: Fairbury, NE 68352
  • Year: 2004
  • USDA License: 47-A-0373
  • USDA Inspector: Randall Wagner, ACI
  • USDA Inspections: 2003-07-22
  • Date of CAPS Investigation: 2004-10-02
Approximately 28 dogs. Breeds: Shih Tzus, Poodles, Pekingese

Shirley Osterman’s kennel was a single-story building about 20 feet wide and 30 feet long,, with vinyl siding, a shingled roof, a door for access on each of its longer sides, and two windows on the longer side facing the house. The doorway facing the house opened to an office area. The office contained an open bag of dog food (3.1(e)-Storage).

In the office there was an open doorway immediately to the left that accessed a hallway that led to the kennel. On a table in the hallway were cleaning supplies, a refrigerator, and a variety of medications not arranged in shelving (3.1(e)-Storage). In the corner of this hallway opposite the table was a three-foot-high pile of full and empty feed bags against a wall directly next to an air conditioning unit (3.1(e)-Storage) (3.1(b)-Condition and site). The hallway wall facing the kennel area had brooms and mops hanging on it and two, four-foot--high plastic trash cans against it (3.1(b)-Condition and site).

The main kennel area to the right of the hallway opening was about 15 feet wide and 15 feet long. In the middle of the room were six cages raised 2.5 feet off the concrete flooring on wooden stilts. The cages were made of painted wood painted and were about two feet wide, four feet long, and two feet high long. The cages were divided in half with wooden board and a doggie door connecting the two halves of each cage. One end of the cage was accessible through a treated-wire door while the other end was accessible through the hinged wooden wall. The owner, Shirley Osterman (now Brown), did not walk the investigator through the kennel to see the dogs, but the investigator was able to see a single adult Shih Tzu in a cage.

At the end of the cages was a small table containing medications and a refrigerator. The medications were on the table and not in shelves (3.1(e)-Storage).

A doorway led to another room about five feet wide and 15 feet long that had nine cages lined up against the wall opposite the doorway. The painted-wood cages had treated-wire doors and wooden floors. They were about two feet wide, two feet long, and two feet high. Doggie doors led to outdoor treated wire cages of the same dimensions. Each cage contained two to three adult Shih Tzus, Pekingese, or Poodles.

The indoor cages contained water dishes and metal self-feeders hung on the doors. The self-feeder of one cage containing three Shih Tzus was floor and did not minimize the chance of contamination by excreta (3.9(b)-Feeding).

One pen with three Poodles and another pen with three Lhasa Apsos had feces smeared and dried on the cage walls (3.1(c)(3)-Cleaning).

Next to the doorway accessing this room were empty feed bags stacked about three feet high against a wall (3.1(b)-Condition and site).

Another doorway on the opposite wall led outside to the outdoor cages. These cages were similar to those inside except they sat over a metal sheet raised about six inches off the dirt. The sheet was covered in rust and more than two weeks’ accumulation of feces (3.1(c)(1)(i)- Surfaces) (3.11(a)-Cleaning of primary enclosures). Ms. Brown indicated on 10/3/04 that her husband was going to tear out the metal flooring and replace it with concrete flooring.

Bea's Beat

Blog with CAPS Spokesmodel Beatrice, a puppy mill survivor and vegan advocate.

Blog with Beatrice!

Deborah Howard

Deborah Howard

Learn more about Deborah Howard, president and founder of Companion Animal Protection Society.

Meet Deborah


Keep up-to-date about CAPS and read about issues affecting companion animals, especially those suffering in pet shops and puppy mills.

Visit CAPS Blog

Contact Us

Contact CAPS

Companion Animal Protection Society (CAPS)
759 CJC Hwy., #332
Cohasset, MA 02025
p: 339-309-0272
501 (c)(3) Tax ID#: 58-2040413

Contact by Webform

Class Action Lawsuits

scales of justice

If you purchased a sick or dying puppy from Barkworks or Happiness is Pets, you may be able to join consumer class action lawsuits. The first step is to fill out the CAPS complaint form.

Read more about Happiness is Pets or Barkworks.

CAPS Complaint Form