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Smithsburg woman surrenders 20 dogs to Humane Society

Martin faces animal cruelty charges in connection with malnourished doves and guinea pigs

Martin faces animal cruelty charges in connection with malnourished doves and guinea pigs

May 21, 2008|By ERIN JULIUS

A woman facing animal cruelty charges in connection with malnourished doves and guinea pigs surrendered 20 dogs Monday to the Humane Society of Washington County.

Bertha May Martin, 67, of 12903 Unger Road in Smithsburg, appeared March 26 in Washington County District Court, where she requested her case be moved to Washington County Circuit Court for a jury trial.

Humane Society officials discovered the alleged neglect during an annual inspection for a kennel license. The application for a kennel license was denied, said Katherine Cooker, Humane Society spokeswoman. Martin appealed to the Washington County Animal Control Authority, which upheld the Humane Society's decision, Cooker said in a press release.

Keeping more than five dogs requires a kennel permit, according to Washington County's animal control ordinance, Cooker said.

Martin on Monday surrendered 20 of her 25 dogs.

Another woman, Patty Burkett, 64, also of 12903 Unger Road in Smithsburg, pleaded guilty in March to one count of animal cruelty, failing to provide a dove with nutritious food in sufficient quantity, proper drink, air, space or veterinary care. She is scheduled for a sentencing hearing May 28.

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Among the dogs surrendered were Boston terriers, Jack Russell, miniature pinscher, Pekinese, PugaPoo and Chinese Chin. All dogs had been housed by Martin in wire crates in her home.

The dogs were being held Tuesday at the Humane Society of Washington County for evaluation in an effort to determine their adoptability, Cooker said.

Martin's jury trial is scheduled for June 16.

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