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Man charged with 50 counts of animal cruelty posted bail

by Diana Haecker ~ January 21st, 2011

As the Mat-Su animal control shelter in Palmer is still nursing more than 150 malnourished huskies back to health, the dog’s breeder is out of jail and awaiting trial set for March 10.

Frank Rich was arrested by troopers on January 11 when troopers and Mat-Su animal control executed a search warrant to find 19 dead dogs and 157 severely dehydrated and starving dogs at Rich’s dog yard.

Rich was taken into custody, arraigned and charged with 50 counts of animal cruelty. He posted a bail bond for $2,500  and has been released from the Mat-Su Pretrial facility on January 13.

Meanwhile, the 157 surviving dogs that were rescued by the Mat-Su animal shelter are being nursed back to health. Mat-Su Borough spokeswoman Patty Sullivan said that there are even more dogs. One female husky gave birth to six puppies as she was in the truck being taken to the animal care facility in Palmer the night of the rescue.

There were also still four loose dogs at Rich’s dog yard that since have been caught and taken to the shelter.

Donations to the shelter keep on coming in and are still needed, Sullivan said. The Alaska Job Corps has built 72 dog houses for the animals. While blankets, dog houses or building materials are no longer needed, the animal shelter now needs storage organizers, dog nail clippers, canned dog food of the Science Diet brand, Oster grooming razors and clipper blades.

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