2 charged after 80 dogs seized from Upshur County home

Published: Oct. 4, 2022 at 11:02 AM EDT
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UPSHUR COUNTY, W.Va (WDTV) - STORY UPDATE (10/7/22 at 2:10 p.m.)

The Upshur County Sheriff’s Office has identified two women that were arrested after 80 dogs were seized from a trailer in Upshur County.

41-year-old Rebecca Clark and 61-year-old Denise Clark, both of Rock Cave, were arrested on Thursday, Oct. 6 and charged on one count each of animal cruelty, operating an unregistered kennel and conspiracy, the UCSO says.

Both were arraigned before Magistrate Davis and released on a $5,000 bond each.

80 dogs were seized inside a single-wide trailer in Upshur County Monday morning.

“I think that far exceeds any number of animals we’ve seized before,” said Upshur County Sheriff Virgil Miller.

Upshur County Sheriff’s deputies, Upshur County Animal Control and Lewis County Animal Control executed a search warrant on the home on Selbyville Road, according to deputies.

Officers said the search warrant was for suspected unlicensed breeding of dogs and failure to pay dog taxes.

Miller says it appeared to be some kind of dog breeding operation.

“Actually the dogs were in pretty good condition -- of course you can imagine they’re not getting any exercise all they’re doing is getting fed and being kept in a small kennel,” said Miller.

Authorities said more charges are expected in the case.

“There were two adult female ladies living in the trailer, but I don’t know how they cared for 80 animals,” said Miller.

Miller says many of the dogs were small and primarily of 2 different breeds.

Now it appears the big question is where do all of these dogs go?

Miller says they are currently at the Lewis-Upshur Humane Society which is already caring for many animals.

“They were pretty near capacity before this occurred so now they’re really overwhelmed,” said Miller.

5 news has reached out to the Lewis-Upshur Humane Society for further details, but has yet to receive comment.