CHEROKEE COUNTY, Texas (KETK) – Nicholas Pet Haven began asking the public for help on Tuesday in placing about 50 dogs in loving foster homes. This is after they were found at a puppy mill in Cherokee County.

According to the shelter, 3-4 dogs each were stuffed into many stacked up rabbit cages. All dogs have food and water but need to be vetted, groomed and more.

Nicholas Pet Haven is reporting the owners are elderly, requesting help and willing to surrender to reputable rescues. Breeds include Yorkies, Chihuahuas, Miniature Poodles, and many more.

Three East Texas rescue shelters: Nicolas Pet Haven, Angel Paw Advocates, and Let Love Live from Cooksville partnered together to make the rescue happen and are now turning to the community for help.

“They didn’t want us to come through their property because they were ashamed of the conditions everything was in,” said Lynn Harty with Angel Paws Advocates.

All three rescue shelters agreed to assist the owners to remove the animals from their property.

“There were a total of 49 animals confiscated from the breeder’s house. We are taking 22 of the littles and the one large dog that was there and tied to the tree. The large dog is in good shape actually, but these littles obviously have not been groomed in a very long time. They have teeth that are falling out. They haven’t had any vet care at all. I was told there are no records on any of them,” said Let Love Live’s Evan Penhasi.

All dogs have been living with matted fur, little to no food or water and three to four dogs were found stuffed in rabbit cages with unfathomable conditions. With the help of Spence and White Veterinary Hospital, most have now received medical attention.

“They are all going to adoptive foster homes. We will be getting them groomed and all spayed and neutered. Pretty much every one of them are not altered, so we don’t know if any of them are pregnant. Most of them are five and up. There was only one puppy,” said Harty.

For all the rescues to be fully vetted, costs could run up to around $10,000-15,000 and most have come back with a positive test for heartworms. Some even experience heart murmurs.

“We are going to extend a little bit of the reduction of heartworm treatment for the rescues. I’m calling out the other clinics in town! You guys should step up and help in reducing your cost. They really need it because Nicolas Pet Haven’s going to have 30-something dogs to treat,” said Dr. Gary Spence, with Spence and White Veterinary Hospital.

If interested in helping or taking part in Clear the Shelters Month, all three rescue shelters are accepting both foster applications and donations at this time.

Nicholas Pet Haven has agreed to assist the owners, but with 40-50 dogs on the property they are reaching out for “big time” help.

You can contact the nonprofit at 903-630-4242 or by email at

For Foster applications and Donations:

Nicolas Pet Haven, please call: (903) 630-4242 or email:

Angel Paws Advocates:

Let Love Live:

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