Former Vick partner cited for kennel’s state
A former business partner of NFL quarterback Michael Vick is facing charges in Henry County, Georgia, after authorities found kennel dogs living in deplorable conditions and one dead dog stuffed in a plastic trash bag, according to WSBTV in Atlanta.
Art Washington owns Premier K-9 in Ellenwood, which the television station reported is operating on a revoked business license.
Fox 5 in Atlanta reports that Washington was issued 16 citations in connection with the conditions at the kennel, and may face additional charges after further inspection of the facility.
Animal control officials say Washington also was operating without a breeders permit.
Washington told investigators he is selling the business, which raises, sells, trains and imports German shepherds, Rottweilers and Presa Canarios.
Washington has had extensive business ties to Vick, WSBTV reported, including a partnership in a former car rental venture. ESPN Magazine reported the Vick and Washington were also partners in a horse farm at one point.
According to the Premier K9 website, the company has provided dogs to many athletes and celebrities, including the NBA’s Joe Johnson and Ron Mercer, baseball players Rick Ankiel, Kris Benson and Brian Jordan, NFL players Fernando Bryant and Dunta Robinson, and recording star Monica.
Apparently, in 2007, Michael Vick was briefly pictured on the satistifed celebrity customer page, too.
The Premier K9 website describes the company as “responsible, well respected breeders who have established a reputation for meeting and surpassing their customers’ expectations.”
But according to the county’s animal control director, the business may have been abandoning many of its dogs — and calling animal control to pick them up as strays.
Gerri Yoder said the “strays” were of the same breeds the kennel sells — Rottweilers, German Shepherds, Doberman Pinschers and other purebreds.
“These dogs were extremely fearful or they were extremely aggressive, and in every case they were malnourished to the point of emaciation,” she told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Thursday.
Yoder said inspectors visiting the kennel found debris and animal waste on the floor, animals with feces matted to their hair, piles of dog hair, overflowing sinks and thick spider webs. “The lack of cleanliness of the kennel was not something that happened over a weekend,” she said. “The conditions at the kennel were a direct result of long-term neglect.”
Washington, in a statement, said he had been out of the country and blamed the conditions on employees. You can see his full statement here.
Posted by jwoestendiek September 2nd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, art washington, atlanta, dead, dogs, ellenwood, former, georgia, german shepherds, henry county, investigation, kennel, michael vick, partner, pets, premier k9, presa canarios, raid, rottweilers, sales, trainer, trash bag