LA MESA, Calif. — A San Diego based dog rescue is warning people to know where they get their pets from. The message comes after more than 100 dogs were rescued from a popular breeder in Mexico.
"I only wish we would’ve known sooner and done something then," said Lauren Botticelli, Executive Director of The Animal Pad Dog Rescue.
A total of 111 dogs are now getting a second chance at life. The dogs, mostly doodles, were living in filth, fighting for food and water and at times, even killing each other. Most of them were found sick and underweight.
Some were so scared they refused to let rescuers take them in, so the team had to wrangle them to get them to safety.
"It was awful we didn’t want to traumatize these dogs any further but there was really no other way to get them out," she added.
Botticelli says the conditions the dogs were living in were unlike anything she’s seen before.
"It was just a really really sad sight. A week later they’re all realizing that this was for the best and they’re all excited and happy to be here for the most part, there are still some that are working through a lot of trauma and they will be working through these things for a really long time," said Botticelli.
The rescue picked up all types of dog breeds during the rescue but the majority are different doodle mixes – an increasingly popular breed.
"It’s much more than just a cute dog. We said, 'we were lucky that these dogs were doodles, because if they were pit bulls, who would be adopting these dogs?'," she said.
The dogs were rescued after the breeder was arrested in Mexico. Many of the breeder’s clients were people living in San Diego County and Orange County.
Now Botticelli is calling on anyone to think twice before getting a pet.
"A transport across the border…so much is left unknown there. Do your due diligence regardless of where you’re getting your animals from. If you’re going to go the breeder route, just make sure you see the spot your dog is coming from, meet the people, interact…" she added.
The rescue said many of the dogs are pregnant so the number of the dogs in their care will quickly multiply in the coming weeks.
The Animal Pad is asking anyone who is seriously looking to make an addition to their family to consider fostering or adopting.
To learn more, click here.
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