Veterinarian And Assistant Who Kept Huskies In Secret ‘Dungeon’ Convicted Of Animal Cruelty

A British veterinarian and his partner who kept a dozen Huskies trapped in a filthy secret basement “dungeon” have been found guilty of animal cruelty.

In February of 2015, police officers were called to Armley Vets in Leeds, England when a domestic dispute broke out between veterinarian Gary Samuel and Rochelle McEwan, his partner and assistant. Once they arrived, prosecutors say Samuel moved a table and pulled back a rug to uncover a secret trapdoor to a cellar under the office where the couple lived and worked.


Photo credit: RSPCA

The officers found 12 huskies and 3 cats in a dark, urine and feces covered room. “These are her animals,” Samuel is reported as saying. “She never feeds them, just collects them.”


Photo credit: RSPCA

Further searching of the offices revealed more distressed animals. In total, 22 dogs and 8 cats were removed from the veterinary practice and an RSPCA investigation was launched.


Photo credit: RSPCA

“The condition of these animals and the way in which they were being kept was appalling,” said RSPCA Inspector Nikki Cheetham. “It was filthy, there [were feces] everywhere, and they had no access to food or water. Most of the cats were shut in one room, which was also covered with excrement.”

“It is unthinkable to consider what was going on in this surgery as clients were coming and going, paying their vet fees,” the inspector also added.

Although prosecutors believe Samuel was trying to put the blame on McEwan, this past week both were convicted on 6 different animal cruelty and neglect charges, the BBC reported the couple will spend at most 6 months in jail, a decision that pleased Inspector Cheetham.

Of the 30 animals rescued, 21 have since been adopted.

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