Woman says she was trying to help dogs - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Woman says she was trying to help dogs

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AMERICUS, GA (WALB) -

By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) –  A Sumter County woman charged in an animal cruelty case pleads no contest to her charge. In October the Sumter County Sheriff's office seized more than 80 dogs from Margie Davis' property.

She feels the state put her in a bad position asking her to take in a friends dogs, then punished her for doing it.

Davis was sentenced to 12 months probation and fined $270. But she told us she feels she's been made out to be a villain, when all she was trying to do was provide for dogs, many older dogs, with no where else to go.

27 of the more than 80 dogs seized from Margie Davis are still at the Sumter Humane Society waiting for homes and the numbers continue to grow.

"We just had two Yorkies give birth this week to eleven Yorkie puppies and we've got three poodles, three puppies here in the Shelter a poodle gave birth to a week ago," said Tricia Howard, Exec. Director of the Sumter Humane Society.

For the first time Davis spoke out claiming she took in dogs in bad condition from a friend. She says the State Department of Agriculture urged her to take the dogs because the other breeder could no longer care for them. Davis admits the conditions on her property weren't perfect, but she says they weren't as horrific as the state described.

"They were not being looked after, their coats were matted, they had long nails, their health was not good, I mean we had worked on them and work on them and they were old," said Davis.

The Sheriff's Office showed us pictures of feces in cages and poorly kept bowls. Davis says after she got sick, it was hard to keep up.

"They were not in perfect condition because I was down with the flu at the time, but they were not horrible by any means. Now I don't know about my puppy room because my little daughter who's a teenager was looking after it and I had not been in there because I had the flu," said Davis.

She told us her Vet had seen the dogs and said they were fine. She wanted to plead not guilty, but instead pleaded no contest so the matter could be resolved.

"I really wanted to plead not guilty, but if I had done that, my dogs would have had to stay down there and they would have had to suffer and they would have had to be out in the cold which a lot of them are not used to, and I didn't feel they should have to suffer for that."

Humane Officials feel differently they say her charges don't go far enough for what they've had to deal with.

"I feel like at least 81 counts, instead of one count, $270.00 fine, 12 months probation, what is that? And then she's allowed to get three back?" asked Howard.

They hope to recoup thousand in Vet fees and boarding expenses at a restitution hearing later this month.

That restitution hearing hasn't been scheduled yet but should be held in the next two weeks.

 Davis told me she doesn't fault the county, but she does fault the state. She says she plans to comply fully with whatever the county decides at the restitution hearing.

Of the 27 dogs remaining, many are available for adoption.  You can contact the Sumter Humane Society at (229) 924-0268.  You can also access their website at the  following link:   

http://www.sumterhumanesociety.org/

The Sumter Humane Society is closed Wednesdays and Sundays.  They are open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM.

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