53 puppies died in transport vehicle in southwest Missouri

11 months 23 hours 13 minutes ago Thursday, December 22 2016 Dec 22, 2016 Thursday, December 22, 2016 12:38:00 PM CST December 22, 2016 in News
By: The Associated Press

NEOSHO (AP) — Authorities said 53 puppies died of overheating when they were left in a vehicle in southwestern Missouri.

The Newton County Sheriff's Department said a truck company employee was struggling to keep the puppies warm Sunday night because temperatures outside were in the single digits and the truck's heater was malfunctioning. Chief deputy Chris Jennings said the worker added an extra heating component and found the dogs dead after returning to check on them 90 minutes later. Jennings described it as a "horrible accident."

Renee Ray, an owner of the trucking company RDR Transport, said some puppies survived and were treated by veterinarians.

The sheriff's department didn't plan to seek charges, but the U.S. Department of Agriculture was looking into the deaths to determine if animal welfare laws were broken.

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