Dog Abuse

67 Puppies Found Crammed Inside Van Behind a New Jersey Pet Store

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Via Paramus Police Dept
Via Paramus Police Dept

Nearly 70 puppies and small dogs are now in the care of animal control officials after being found locked in steel cages inside a parked van behind a Paramus, New Jersey pet store in the middle of the night.

Two Paramus Police officers were patrolling the area when they saw a van parked in the rear of the shopping complex. As they approached the 2002 Freightliner Sprinter van, they heard crying and whining and were immediately met with an overwhelming smell of urine and feces.

Officers opened the van using an unlocked side door, and found 67 puppies and small dogs crammed into cages, stacked on top of one another. Each tiny cage housed between 2 and 4 dogs, the dogs unable to even stand. Many of the cages did not contain food or water. Dogs were covered in urine and feces. Temperature inside the van when the puppies were found was 38-degrees.

Via Paramus Police Dept.
Just Pups in Paramus, New Jersey. Via Paramus Police Dept.

The store, Just Pups, is the Paramus branch of a chain owned by Vincent LoSacco. LoSacco owns and operates four pet shops in New Jersey – East Brunswick, Emerson, Paramus and East Hanover – and operates a large-scale breeding facility in Missouri. LoSacco, you may recall, is currently facing 267 animal abuse charges in relation to his East Brunswick location where, just last week, his business license was revoked.

The charges are mostly from the lack of adequate infection control procedures, poor and improper veterinary care and the co-mingling of sick animals with new animals just brought into the store. Several animals purchased at the store were found to be “sick and unfit for sale” after being examined by veterinarians. The NJSPCA said it found three dead dogs in a freezer.

Just three weeks ago, LoSacco posted the following video to YouTube denouncing the allegations against his East Bruswick store:

LoSacco claimed that the cages in the “specially equipped transport van” found early Monday morning were not overcrowded, that there were at least 8 empty cages in the van and those with multiple dogs were likely litters. He said the low temperature reading inside the van was because police opened the door, letting the cold outside air in. The van was equipped with a small space heater. He claims that the dogs became covered in feces when police and animal control officials loaded the van full of puppies onto a flatbed tow truck to transport them.

Some Of The Puppies Resting After Their Rescue. Via Paramus Police Dept.
Some of the puppies resting after their rescue. Via Paramus Police Dept.

Sixty-seven dogs in total were taken to Oradell Animal Hospital in Paramus. Of those, 15 were in need of medical care. The dogs rescued from the van were various breeds including Golden retrievers, Labradors, and terrier-mixes. When they were found, the dogs were in the process of being transported to the Paramus store from LoSacco’s breeding facility in Missouri.

The incident is being investigated by the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office Animal Cruelty Task Force, Paramus police detectives and the Paramus Health Department. The store has been closed pending an investigation.

WEIGH IN! The incident has left dog lovers in New Jersey and around the world in shock.

How could a man under investigation for 267 counts of animal cruelty still be legally allowed to operate multiple pet stores and a large-scale breeding operation (read: puppy mill)?

Why is this man not in jail?

How could authorities have prevented this from happening in the first place?

Please, leave a comment below.

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Avatar Of Tara

    tara

    says:

    if we don’t close down ALL puppy mills, then the puppy stores won’t close down….and if we don’t keep insisting on having pricey, pure bred pets to show off our wealth or status or prestige, then they will not be closed down…money talks! and the more a pure bred costs, the more they are wanted…..
    so realize that every little doggie in a puppy store comes from horrific conditions, and if they aren’t purchased before a reasonable amount of time (a few months) their demise is dependent on someone coming to their rescue. and there are MILLIONS Of pure bred doggies, even puppies, inside of shelters..including kill shelters….where each day, the statistics i heard were 5500 murdered each day…over FIVE MILLION…5 million PLUS…each year…because WE refuse to stop this insanity….and then there are many MANY home breeders that don’t exactly care well for the little ones, or their parents.
    money breeds more money..and greed..and more greed…and more deaths and murders and neglect and abuse and and and…..
    but we keep allowing it. WE, as in ALL of us, because if WE are doing NOthing, we are DOing it to these precious creations of G-d’s…..we are their voices…we are their advocates…we are COMMANDED to take care of every living being on this planet..not to abuse, torture, torment, murder and every thing else that is done to these voiceless innocents (add the children in here too…it’s ALmost as bad…add abortion and it IS as bad)
    WE can make a change…for the better. period…WE…alone…together..however WE choose to make those changes….
    it’s time! there are no excuses left..period!

  2. Avatar Of Tina

    Tina

    says:

    People quit buying these puppies. Its all so true, yes you all that buy them, you know where they come from. Puppy mills. They all are mistreated. This man is so guilty. He needs to be behind bars. Or better yet framed in a cage. Let him go without food water and socialization. Let him lay in his own urine and feces. And really hurt him in his little hockey book. Fines and time. There are so many animals in shelters and rescues that need furever homes and love. But the ppl that keep buying the little full breed pups keep lining ppl like him bank roll. Get over the breed part and do the right thing and adopt. There are many puppies and adult animals that need you. This guy makes me sick. And thank you goes to that ONE PERSON that has filed the charges. That’s what it takes, that one person to get the ball rolling

  3. Avatar Of Linda Puleo

    Linda Puleo

    says:

    How’s this allowed to happen? This man should be facing animal abuse felony charges. His puppy mill needs to be closed down, his pet stores closed and he should be in prison.

  4. Avatar Of Rita Lovejoy

    Rita Lovejoy

    says:

    In 2015 “Gov. Chris Christie signed legislation that is intended to combat “puppy mills,” or large-scale breeders that emphasize profit over animal welfare.” The penalty that I read is only $500 for each violation if a pet store does not comply with the law, which I think is like a slap on the hand. I commend Gov. Christie and New Jersey for doing something to prevent animal abuse but, as in the case of LoSacco, more aggressive measures should be taken. His businesses should be shut down while he’s being investigated and his puppy mills should be at the very least checked by the ASPCA and the USDA. If this guy is running a dirty, cramped mill he should be shut down and not allowed to have anything to do with breeding or selling animals!

  5. OMD!! This is outrageous!! NEW JERSEY – why is he still operating other stores?? People, get out there and picket, be the voice for these poor animals, and their pawents who live in >>HIS<< puppymill!!! Pardon my French but what a pile of bull that fn.. low life concocted as his reasoning for the condition of the animals! And why are his other stores not closed while he is under investigation?? This guy is the worse of the worse….. talk about greed, he's got it all grrrr

  6. Avatar Of Vickie Hilbert

    Vickie Hilbert

    says:

    Maybe a judge needs to point out to this selfish un-empathetic piece of flesh that it is up to us to care for animals, not up to the animals to support an able bodied man who is too lazy to find a real job. This guy will not stop until forced to…if it takes prison, then so be it. If it turns out that he does go to prison, we need to make sure that at least one animal lover finds out the reason for his incarceration. Justice will be handed out.

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