Couple arrested on 27 counts of animal cruelty after dogs, puppies found deserted

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Tonopah, AZ (KPHO) — Two adult dogs and seven puppies just 5 weeks old were found abandoned at a Tonopah home and now two people have been taken into custody.

Daniel Gonzalez and Andrea Mendoza, both 33, were arrested Tuesday and booked into jail on 27 counts of animal cruel neglect and abandonment.

A property owner alerted Maricopa County sheriff’s deputies in November that his ex-tenants had deserted nine puppies and dogs at his property.

When detectives got there, they found the animals, some severely emaciated and lethargic, without food, water and shelter.

A veterinarian examined the dogs and treated them for Valley fever, dehydration and hypothermia. It was estimated that if the dogs were left in this situation, they would have died within eight to 20 hours, sheriff’s investigators said.

A lengthy search was launched for the owners. Weeks later, Gonzalez was located in Gila Bend and Mendoza was found in Arlington.

The pair also faces two counts of animal cruel neglect/physical injury.

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