Thirty-five Chihuahuas were removed from a local resident’s home after Minimum Housing deemed it unlivable.
Officers arrived at 128 John St., the home of Joseph Sicilia, 47, and Judy Cicillini, 59, last Friday to respond to a complaint regarding an excessive number of dogs and a strong odor emanating from the small one-story home.
Officer Darren C. Parrillo responded to the scene where he heard dogs barking and detected a noxious odor, which he concluded came from urine and feces.
Although Sicilia was not required to vacate the premises, officials advised him that the house was not in livable condition. Animal Control Officers retrieved nine dogs from the property on Friday. Sicilia told officers that day that there were only five dogs remaining in the home.
Authorities returned on Tuesday and rescued an additional 26 Chihuahuas from the property.
Five dogs were permitted to stay at Sicilia’s property, including three puppies and two adults. Sicilia said that if he is unable to care for the dogs, he will turn them over to authorities.
While no charges have been filed, Mayor Scott Avedisian said that the city does not condone animal hoarding.
“We will go after hoarding,” said Avedisian. “It’s a serious issue. Not only from the enforcement stand point but also because now we have to find a place for them all.”
The animals were taken to shelters across the state where they will be put up for adoption.