Accused puppy mill owner speaks out

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A woman accused of running a massive puppy mill in Norman said she was just trying to help the animals.

"A lot of these animals are eight-years-old or older and have special needs," said Roxanne Hines.

But, the officers who seized the dogs disagree.

"When our animal welfare officers did get out to the scene, they felt like, from what they could see before actually entering the residence, there was enough for them to lawfully seize those animals," said City of Norman Spokeswoman Sarah Jensen.

In all, 65 poodles, shih tzus, chihuahuas, cavalier spaniels and pomeranians were seized from her home. Many were puppies, just a few days old.

Hines said she took some of the animals in from a dog rescue operation that was going out of business.

She's upset they were whisked away from her home a week ago.

"They weren't used to being in kennels, and I said, "Please, put them in the truck or something. Don't let them sit here screaming at me,'" Hines said. "They didn't care."

The dogs are now being cared for at the Norman Animal Shelter.

"They're working with getting them with veterinarians, making sure they're healthy and able to be adopted," Jensen said. "I know that's been more of a lengthy process than a lot of citizens expected it to be, but we're just asking them to be patient and go with this formal process."

While the dogs await adoption, Norman Police have filed a complaint with the Cleveland County District Attorney's Office but, so far, no formal charges have been filed.

Hines was allowed to keep one of the dogs that was seized but signed over the rest to the City of Norman.

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