A woman charged with 12 counts of cruelty to animals says she loves animals and would never purposely hurt them.
Lisa Rush, who faces numerous counts in Clark County Municipal Court, said she was sick for a few days but was taking care of the animals the best she could when the investigation against her began.
“I thought the puppies were alright,” Rush said in an interview with this news organization. “They are were fed and not mistreated. I am a human and I fell short. I’m an animal lover.”
She has a public defender in the case and denies any wrongdoing.
Law enforcement began their investigation on April 12 when they were called to her home, an affidavit filed with the charges says.
“Once inside the residence, the officers observed multiple dogs and the home covered in urine and feces,” the affidavit says. “At this time they called the Clark County Dog Warden’s office for a conditions check.”
When the dog warden arrived, Rush was trying to clean the home, the affidavit says.
“There was evidence of feces from the back door to the kitchen and up the staircase,” the affidavit says. “Ms. Rush took us upstairs to her bedroom, which had feces all over the floor of the room. On the opposite side of the bedroom were tables and makeshift shelving along the wall and approximately five cases. Inside three of the cages were three different litters of puppies ranging in age from 6 weeks to 8 weeks.”
The puppies were stained with urine and feces on their feet and bodies, the affidavit says.
The puppies were taken to a local veterinarian, who refused to issue health certificates for the puppies.
“(The vet) examined three 6-week-old puppies and found that they were borderline dehydrated and covered in urine and feces,” the affidavit says. “The 7-week-old litter consisted of five puppies that were also dehydrated and lethargic and covered in urine and feces.”
The vet recommended the puppies be seized by the Clark County dog warden, according to the affidavit, so they could be properly cared for and kept in a clean environment to prevent skin conditions and infection.