HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Ted is a yellow Labrador. He's one of the 232 puppy mill dogs and like the others he's got quite a story to tell. Before we get to Ted let's talk about what was the end of the cat and mouse game in court over who owns the dogs.
"Although the court has yet to set the amount of the bond, in speaking with my clients and looking at everything and the anticipated amount of the bond my clients will not be posting a bond," said Jason Burks, Defense Attorney in court to Judge Glenn Kim.
That statement from the defendant's lawyer officially set the dogs free because it means Bradley International, the company charged with animal cruelty, will not pay what would have been hundreds of thousands of dollars in order for the chance to get the dogs back. Now no matter what happens in the criminal case, which starts in November, the dogs will never go back to the defendants or the Waimanalo farm.
"We're talking huge figures as far as dollar amounts with no guarantee at the end we'll actually get the animals back. At the end of the day it was just not practicable to outlay that amount of money," said Burks, outside the courtroom. "It was a fairly easy decision at that point as far as not posting the bond. That ends the forfeiture phase of the case."
"It is a huge freedom for these dogs now to not have to have puppies again to not have to exist solely for the purpose of making more puppies. These guys can be pets in their own right, individuals that are loved and appreciated and cared for like they should be," said Aleisha Swartz, Hawaiian Humane Society Lead Veterinarian.
But before any of the 232 dogs will be permanently adopted they'll first get fixed. Foster volunteers have already started bringing them in to have the procedure.
"We're already jumping in today. We're getting them spayed and neutered and out for adoption as quickly as we can. Other veterinarians could really help us out by offering to spay or neuter dogs so that we can get them into their forever homes as quickly as possible because we have to have all these animals spayed and neutered before we can process the adoption," said Dr. Swartz.
That leads us back to Ted. It's a love story of sorts because he has a girlfriend named Kenzie.
"Kenzie is a black lab who has been here at the shelter for a little bit. She has a bonded mate a dog that was probably in the same housing area as she was in at the puppy mill and they really want to be with one another but until this point we haven't been able to because we didn't want them to breed and have more puppies," said Dr. Swartz.
Kenzie has already been spayed and got a good dental cleaning while under anesthesia.
Ted will also be getting snipped and the shelter hopes to find an adoptive owner willing to take them both.
"We're hoping to, we're going to do everything we can to get them adopted out together as a pair because they're really really attached to one another," said Dr. Swartz.
The foster volunteers will have first dibs at adopting the dog they've cared for since February. Most have already decided to keep the dogs, but there will be about 30 of the puppy mill dogs up for adoption, including Ted and Kenzie.
Some of the dogs will be available at an adoption event at McKenna's Windward Ford in Kailua this Sunday September 18 from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm. The dogs, many of which are pure breeds, will be adopted for $65.
If you don't happen to get one of the puppy mill dogs there are plenty of other animals that are available to be adopted at the Hawaiian Humane Society.
For more information, visit www.hawaiianhumane.org/End-Puppy-Mills.html.