February 12, 2013 18:56 ET

Caledon Man and Woman Convicted of Animal Cruelty Under Ontario SPCA Act

Woman sentenced to one year in jail

NEWMARKET, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 12, 2013) - On February 11, 2013 Rita Mueller, 50, and her son Michael Mueller, 29, of Caledon, Ontario were sentenced to two counts under the Ontario SPCA Act, for permitted distress and causing distress to 29 mixed-breed dogs.

Rita Mueller was sentenced to one year in jail, received a life time ban on owning/possessing or caring for any animals, and must pay a restitution of $16,537.03 to the Ontario SPCA.

Michael Mueller received a fine of $1,250 per count, for a total of $2,500.

In late August 2011, the Ontario SPCA received a call regarding the foul smell from a house and a report that numerous dogs lived in the home. An investigation was conducted.

On September 7, 2011 the Ontario SPCA executed a warrant at the Mueller's Caledon residence. The dogs were found in poor living conditions, flea ridden, some having poor body conditions, and overgrown nails. Ten dogs were surrendered to the Society that day. Orders were written, including an order to provide immediate veterinary care for the remaining dogs.

On September 8, 2011, after failing to comply with the orders, 19 dogs were removed, with veterinary recommendation, by the Ontario SPCA.

We are encouraged to see Animal Welfare taken seriously in the eyes of the law," says Chief Inspector Connie Mallory. "No animal should ever have to suffer, at the hands of an irresponsible owner."

The Ontario SPCA reminds pet owners that if you have concerns for the welfare of your animal there are other alternatives than allowing an animal to go without adequate care. Contact your local Ontario SPCA and we can discuss what services are available. To report cruelty please call 1-888-668-7722 or email your concern to cruelty@ospca.on.ca.

Ontario SPCA and Humane Society:

Protecting animals since 1873, Ontario SPCA is Ontario's Animal Welfare organization. A registered charity comprised of over 50 communities.

Ontario SPCA is mandated under the Ontario SPCA Act to enforce animal welfare legislation and the Act provides Ontario SPCA Agents and Inspectors with police powers to do so.

Ontario SPCA provides leadership in animal welfare innovations including introducing high-volume spay/neuter services to Ontario and opening the Provincial Education and Animal Centre.


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Contact Information

  • Provincial Media Contact:
    Ontario SPCA
    Alison Cross
    Senior Manager, Marketing and Communications