Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Province's most notorious puppy broker/stealer/seller is arrested
I forewarn you - this is going to be a long post, because I want to pack in as much information as I can - It seems that our province's most notorious seller of sick, diseased - and quite often stolen - puppies has been arrested in the last few days, for obstruction and mischief - and hopefully will be charged with animal cruelty by the Nova Scotia SPCA - if they ever get their act together.
Gail Benoit has been notorious for years - maybe decades - for selling sick dogs that she gets free from places like ads in the paper, yard sales, from the side of the road - basically anywhere she can find them - and then she resells them. She'll take them sick, dying - it doesn't matter to her - and then she does nothing to make them healthy - and then she'll sell them for whatever she can get - and quite often she'll try and sell them as purebred dogs. She warehouses them on her property in very unsavoury circumstances and further damages them.
As well - scuttlebutt is that if she sees a puppy or dog unattended in a yard - that dog goes missing pretty fast and then shows up in a new family that has paid a pretty penny for it. And I say that because I have read first hand accounts of it.
Last Friday animal cruelty officers, with the RCMP in tow raided Gail Benoit and Dana Bailey's propety. There was an article in Sunday's Chronicle Herald about it:
SPCA seizes puppies Digby County woman arrested; animal cruelty charges pending By BRIAN MEDEL Yarmouth Bureau Sat. Oct 27 - 5:33 AM
DIGBY — Provincial SPCA investigators seized puppies from a property in Roxville, near Digby, on Friday for the second day in a row.
Every RCMP officer available in the town Friday also went to the blue bungalow on Highway 217, where things turned ugly in a hurry.
Gail Benoit was home when the officers arrived and was arrested. She was screaming obscenities and rocking violently in the back seat of a police car when she was taken away.
Cpl. Trish McQuarrie later took photos of a large gob of phlegm on the plastic shield between the front and back seats where Ms. Benoit allegedly spat.
"All we're there for is to keep the peace . . . and to ensure that the SPCA officers are able to do their job," Cpl. McQuarrie said.
Eight puppies were seized from the home and garage on Friday after two were taken away on Thursday.
Ms. Benoit's husband, Dana Bailey, was not home during the raid but he arrived at the Digby RCMP detachment shortly after 5:30 p.m. and began shouting at officers.
"What were you doing at my house again today?" he said, continuing to shout and curse.
"You'd better let her out," he said, referring to his wife. "She's had enough. Do you hear me? She's had enough."
He then jumped into his minivan and drove off.
A sign on the rural home's mailbox says Puppies Us. A middle word or letter appears to be missing.
Judith Gass, past-president of the Nova Scotia SPCA, said investigators at the property on Thursday found more pups thought to be infested with parasites, so they returned on Friday.
Some of the pups had bulging abdomens and likely carried large loads of worms, Ms. Gass said.
She said charges under the provincial Animal Cruelty Prevention Act and the Criminal Code are pending against one or more occupants of the home.
The SPCA was acting on complaints, Ms. Gass said, and the investigation will continue.
Today there was another article talking about it:
Police charge Digby puppy seller SPCA finalizing animal-related charges By BRIAN MEDEL Yarmouth Bureau Tue. Oct 30 - 6:00 AM
DIGBY — A woman whom the RCMP forcibly removed from her home Friday so SPCA officers could look for sick puppies has been charged with obstruction and mischief.
Gail Ruth Benoit, 38, of Roxville, Digby County, will appear in Digby provincial court on Dec. 10.
Provincial SPCA investigators are still finalizing animal-related charges that should be ready this week, said Pam Keddy, president of the Nova Scotia SPCA.
Ten puppies were taken from Ms. Benoit's blue bungalow and garage on Highway 217, two on Wednesday and eight more on Friday. Ms. Keddy confirmed Monday that testing on the seized dogs revealed an intestinal virus linked to unsanitary living conditions.
"What we're hoping to achieve by laying these charges and going to court is to get a prohibition . . . of (dog) ownership," Ms. Keddy said.
The SPCA is also seeking out people who may have bought littermates of the seized puppies.
"One of those dogs is a German shepherd mix," Ms. Keddy said. "That was one of a litter of 10. So there were nine other puppies that would have been purchased from her.
"Also, there was an 11-month-old black cocker spaniel that we had listed on our warrant that had been sold before we exercised it."
People who have bought puppies from the Digby-area woman are asked to contact the SPCA, Ms. Keddy said. The organization's web address is www.spcans.ca.
Ms. Benoit would not talk about her dogs or the charges she faces when contacted by phone Monday.
"I've got nothing to say to you," she said. "Call my lawyer. Have a nice day."
Fran Morrison of Port Caledonia, Cape Breton, bought a puppy from Ms. Benoit last spring. She told The Chronicle Herald that she believes a veterinary medical health record that came with her pup is a forgery.
Ms. Morrison tried to call Ms. Benoit about the dog and the medical record.
"After the puppy arrived, she wouldn't pick up her phone," Ms. Morrison said.
"My daughter contacted her over the Internet. . . . She told my daughter she was getting a purebred Pomeranian.
"And when the puppy arrived, it was definitely no purebred. It's a mixture between a Pom and a chihuahua," she said.
The puppy had worms but otherwise seemed fine.
Ms. Morrison said the medical record that accompanied the puppy contained an inoculation report Scotch-taped inside a blank animal health record folder. The record is dated last March 2 and distemper, adenovirus, parvovirus and leptospirosis are checked off.
"It's not a real vet record," Ms. Morrison said.
Staff at two veterinary clinics in and near Digby said Monday the record would not have come from them.
Ms. Morrison said she paid $520 for a dog she could have bought at the local animal shelter. She still has the black and tan dog, named Cha Cha, which arrived in Cape Breton in a shuttle van.
She said she reported her concerns about Ms. Benoit, including the suspicious medical record, to Digby RCMP last April or May.
"They said they would check into her. They knew of her."
She never heard from them again.
Another Cape Breton woman paid Ms. Benoit $800 for a dog and didn't even receive a medical record.
"She sells them out of The Sunday Herald and she sells them out of our local (bargain flyer)," said Lynn O'Flaherty of New Waterford.
"She doesn't use a name. She uses her phone number.
"My life's work right now is to make sure she doesn't get back into this."
Their puppy, Tigger, appeared to be fine when he arrived last December but he soon began to have seizures.
"We noticed things like him banging into walls," Ms. O'Flaherty said.
"I called the shuttle service who delivered Tigger to me to let him know what was going on and he told me that in the previous six months he had delivered between 40 and 50 pups to my area alone," she said.
Tigger is dead now.
"We could no longer control the grand mal seizures," Ms. O'Flaherty said. "We had him put down at the ripe old age of seven months."
One Cape Breton shuttle service said it will no longer carry animals for Ms. Benoit.
Brennan's Shuttle has had a new owner since August and has carried only one dog for the Digby County woman, spokesman Chad McPhee said. The company learned from the SPCA that the dog was likely sick.
The shuttle van had to be cleaned inside with a bleach solution, vacuumed twice and then steam-cleaned, costing the company a day's work, Mr. McPhee said.
"That was around the first . . . or the second week of September," he said.
"She was told, no more."
The reason why I'm hesitant that the Nova Scotia SPCA is going to actually do anything about her is that nothing has been done in the past - she's gotten away with murder - people have posted to Kijiji about her like crazy - you can go to
http://halifax.kijiji.ca/c-pets-dogs-puppies-for-sale-DO-NOT-BUY-FROM-GAIL-BENOIT-W0QQAdIdZ25838613 - and read one woman's account. And if you do a Google search on Gail Benoit you come up with several hits on her.
She's in the "Pet abuse.com" database - at http://www.pet-abuse.com/profiles/8348/
There's also other warnings on Kijiji about her - like at http://halifax.kijiji.ca/c-pets-dogs-puppies-for-sale-BUYER-BEWARE-RE-SWEETEST-LITTLE-ENGLISH-BABY-BULLDOGS-W0QQAdIdZ25456165
Just about every message board you go to that sells animals that she posts to will also have a warning about her. And yet the NS SPCA hasn't been able to successfully convict her of anything? How can one woman be so smart, I don't know. She must be a rocket scientist. She must also be a complete sadist for all of the sick and dying dogs that she has sold in her career, that's for sure. And also a complete psychopath. How can she look into the eyes of the dogs that she's selling and not have any compassion at all for their condition? How can she sentence these people that she's duping into buying these puppies a lifetime of enormous vet bills and heartache because they've purchased such damaged goods unbenownst to them.
She preys on people who don't know that it's really not a good idea to buy a puppy out of the trunk of a car, or in a parking lot - or what happens a lot of times with her is that she says you can go meet the parents at her house and when you're on route she'll call you and say that something has come up and can she meet you part way - and then what are you going to say? No? The woman is sly. She's done this a million times.
So then you get your puppy home and it won't eat and his eyes are all pussy and his belly is distended. And what are you supposed to do. You have just won yourself a lifetime of pain thanks to Gail Benoit.
Well right now you've got a golden opportunity - if you have a Gail Benoit dog - you MUST contact the NS SPCA - at 902-835-4798 - and tell them that you are willing to prosecute Gail Benoit for animal cruelty for selling you a deficient product. That's the only way we're going to get her to stop stealing our dogs, and selling dying dogs - and passing parvo and distemper all around this province. She is an evil person and needs to be stopped once and for all - we have a small window of opportunity - and that opportunity is right now. I hope the NS SPCA steps up to the plate and does something about her while they're given the chance right now. I pray for it for all the dogs she's maimed and killed and all the families she's devastated who simply wanted a canine life companion and got pain and sorrow.
Here's an article from August 2006 that talks about Gail selling dogs with parvo from the back of her car from the CBC's website: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/nova-scotia/story/2006/08/11/parvo-dogs.html
Other posts on this blog relating to Gail Benoit
Lawyer for Gail Benoit in the news today