Breeder: Wensmann, Angie and Gerry
Business name: Highdarling Cattery
Address: 32358th St.
City, State Zip: Melrose, MN 56352
Year: 2005
USDA License: 41-B-0155
Date of CAPS Investigation: 2005-06-19

Approximately 120 dogs and 30 puppies. Breeds: Bichon Frises, Yorkshire Terriers, Papillons, Poodles, Maltese, Cavalier King Charles, Boston Terriers, Beagles, Standard Poodles, Golden Retrievers

The main kennel area was a U-shaped building that contained cages with indoor and outdoor pens, connected by metal doggie-doors, and indoor whelping cages.

The outdoor pens were supported by wooden beams and constructed entirely of rusting, thin-gauge metal wire (3.6(a)(2)(xii)-Primary enclosures); (3.1(c)(1)(i)-Surfaces). The investigator observed the dogs’ feet slip through the wire floorings of the cages (3.6(a)(2)(x)-Primary enclosures). Feces-matted hair hung from the flooring (3.1(c)(3)-Surfaces).

Underneath the cages were warped wooden boards that angled down towards concrete slabs. The boards and slabs were covered in fecal stains and had more than 24 hours’ accumulation of fecal material on them (3.6(c)(1)-Surfaces) (3.11(a)-Cleaning of primary enclosures).

The indoor cages had wooden walls and treated thick-gauge wire floorings. The concrete floor underneath the pens was stained with feces, and feces-stained hair hung from the cage floorings. The concrete gutters lining the walkway next to each row of pens were full of standing water, feces, urine, and pieces of food (3.1(c)(3)-Surfaces) (3.1(f)-Drainage and Waste Disposal).

Rusting-metal self feeders were attached to the walls of the cages, and water spigots fed each cage (3.1(c)(1)(i)-Surfaces). These indoor/outdoor enclosures each contained two to four dogs.

Whelping cages
The whelping cages had plastic walls and treated, thick-gauge wire floorings. The walls were covered in dirty build-up (3.1(c)(3)-Surfaces). There was more than 24 hours’ accumulation of fecal matter, and soaked kibble, under each cage on a feces-stained concrete floor, and feces-stained hair hung from the flooring of the cages (3.11(a)-Cleaning of primary enclosures) (3.1(c)(3)-Surfaces).

Metal self feeders and water dishes were attached to the cage walls, all of which were covered in rust and grime (3.1(c)(1)(i)-Surfaces) (3.1(c)(3)-Surfaces). Each whelping cage contained two to four dogs or one to six puppies.

Second building
An additional kennel building was located about two hundred feet east of the above described building. It consisted of about a dozen outdoor runs accessing indoor enclosures with by means of doggie-doors. The outdoor runs had concrete floors and chain link walls. Wire doors made of untreated, thin-gauge rusting wire set on rusting metal frames provided access to these runs (3.1(c)(1)(i)-Surfaces) (3.6(a)(2)(x)-Primary enclosures)

The floors were covered with more than a week’s accumulation of feces (3.11(a)-Cleaning of primary enclosures). Feces accumulation was heaviest where the walls and floors met. Feces also covered plastic self feeders on the pen floors (3.1(c)(3)-Surfaces).

Plastic water dishes near the wire doors of each pen were filled with green and brown water (3.10-Watering). The dishes themselves were covered with dirty build-up (3.1(c)(3)-Surfaces).

The indoor enclosures had concrete floors covered with a layer of straw. The pens’ plastic and wooden walls exhibited dirty build-up (3.1(c)(3)-Surfaces).

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