Tip led investigators to a 75-year-old Laurel woman who is facing over 77 animal cruelty charges.

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Delaware Animal Services (DAS) enforcement unit responded to a complaint concerning the welfare of animals on the Laurel property.

LAUREL (DE) 10/08/20: Thanks to a tipster, 35 hound dogs will have a second chance at life after investigators arrested a 75-year-old Laurel woman who faces over 75 animal cruelty charges.

Officers from the Division of Public Health Office of Animal Welfare (OAW) announced the arrest Wednesday, October 7, 2020.

Leona Long, 75, was arraigned in JP Court 3 in Georgetown on 77 charges, including 35 counts of cruel neglect, 35 counts of failure to obtain dog license, and seven counts for failure to vaccinate for rabies.

Long was released on $37,000 unsecured bail and is prohibited from possession of domestic animals, excluding fowl and rabbits, pending a court hearing.

Last week, the OAW’s Delaware Animal Services (DAS) enforcement unit responded to a complaint concerning the welfare of animals on the Laurel property. DAS executed a search warrant to enter the property, where officers discovered 35 hound dogs living in inhumane, filthy conditions in kennels covered in feces and on tethers throughout the owner’s property.

“It was obvious the animals had been neglected for some time, and suffered tremendously as a result,” said Mark Tobin, Chief of DAS. “To see their tails wag despite such a miserable environment is incredible. These dogs now have a fighting chance for a better future.”

The animals were transferred into the custody of the Brandywine Valley SPCA, the state’s contracted shelter provider, where they have been receiving care and treatment for eye infections, foot and ear injuries, and malnourishment. The dogs range in age from 6 months to 9 years, and will be put up for adoption.

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