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Return All Dogs to Shirls Whispering Winds / CedarShakes Kennels

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Dear Ms. Karen Murphy:

 We are writing to you because of a very disturbing incident that recently occurred in Westminster.

While not residents of your town, the reason we feel compelled to contact you is because it is indicative of a swiftly growing and very disturbing trend throughout the country that appears to have reached your town.

It is in regards to the common practice of illegal search and seizure activities by law enforcement and quasi-law enforcement agencies to confiscate dogs for resale.

To underscore to you that this is not an isolated incident, as an example, just a few weeks ago, basically the same thing happened to a dog breeder family in Illinois. Thanks to the family being willing and financially able to fight for their rights, they have been exonerated of all illegal breeding charges, had their confiscated puppies returned, the police officer involved has been relieved of her duties and the “rescue” involved is now under investigation.

Before that situation, there have been many other similar stories that show the same eagerness for organizations to cloak themselves as “rescues” in order to confiscate dogs for the profitable business of retail rescue.

From our understanding of the situation in your town, it was an anonymous tip led to the “investigation” by your local “shelter” or “rescue” of a kennel housing about 70 Dachshunds .  While we personally abhor an individual so weak-willed as to hide behind an “anonymous” complaint, apparently it was acceptable and/or legal in this case.

An early news article stated ERRONEOUSLY that the owners were operating an illegal breeding operation. Further confirmation from the police proved this to be wrong.

But, really why worry about slandering someone in the press when it titillates the public so?

It was also commented that the dogs were kept in an outside kennel, had mats, were dirty and smelled of urine, and MAY have ear mites. Admittedly the article I read showed a photo of a not-so-nice appearing kennel from a distance. But nothing else.

Does having a dog with mats now constitute abuse or neglect, severe enough to confiscate them? Does having ear mites now mean citizens will lose the right to own their dogs? Will you post an animal control agent at every vet’s door to see which dogs can be confiscated for taking a week too long to get to the vet or groomer?

While many people prefer to have “inside” dogs, and may very well take “better” care of their personal pets, we see nowhere in your state or local laws that defines any of the above as abuse or neglect.

Article Jan 10, 2015 Eagle Tribune states minor issues: “While some appear to be suffering from dental issues and minor medical problems, and one appears to have had a deformed paw from birth, Keiley said he believes all of them will be adoptable.” 


“Westminster Animal Control recovered the animals from a home in which they were living in a cramped space, covered in waste and facing "depleted resources." (how vague can we get and still make it look like the dogs needed saving??)


“Keiley said there are not enough of the Dachshunds to meet the demand from those who have called the shelter, and he hopes that those who have become invested in their story will consider adopting another shelter dog in need of a loving home. “ (retail rescue? You get to confiscate and then reap the rewards of the sales?)

Take a Look at this YouTube video: ;

Here the pups washed and combed out. Do they look emaciated to you, so sick they just lie around barely able to move? Are they on IVs for hydration?

Look carefully at their coats. Are they almost hairless from having to cut out tons of mats or because of mange or other conditions? Or are they shiny and smooth?

This appears to us as described by the United States Department of Justice, A Deprivation of Rights Under Color of Law:. ( )

Our further concern is the means in which shelters, rescues, animal control, police and animal rights extremists omit getting a search warrant, proceed with their search and get an owner to sign over their animals.

Was the owner intimidated into letting them on the property?? Did anyone ask the owner ANYTHING regarding how this search and seizure transpired?

Please, think about that for a second. Do you really think a shelter knocked on the owner’s door, asked for a signature and got it?

In the situation spoken of at the beginning of this letter, the Illinois owner was arrested, threatened with additional charges, threatened with jail, and threatened that if he did not sign over the pups, they would also take the two adult dogs he owned. Having done that in front of his three young children two days before Christmas, what do you think he did? Not the best move legally, but then most people believe what an authority figure tells them. He signed the dogs over.

But, once again, what the news says sounds so good.

What you will see is “The owner signed the dogs over voluntarily.” We're not sure coercion is voluntary. We do not know what happened, but then no one in your town seems concerned to get the other side of the story from the breeder. Everyone is too busy lining up to buy a Dachshund. It’s like a feeding frenzy.

The one statement obtained from the owner was that the accusations were lies. That seems to point to an involuntary surrender of his animals.

And according to your own codes, some due process is required:

" Suitability of Keeper of Animals:

 Continued or repeated reports of animals causing a disturbance, improper fencing, hazardous and unsanitary conditions, mishandling and violation of other laws and regulations relating to animals create questions as to the suitability of the keeper of such animals. After a joint hearing by Selectmen and the Board of Health giving due consideration to the situation and the recommendations of those concerned, including all Town officials involved, the Selectmen and or the Board of Health may decide the keeping of such an animal or animals to be a public nuisance to be abated by the owner as provided in the General Laws.” )

We apologize for going on so long and insinuating ourselves in your town’s affairs, but as stated before, this is a growing concern for many of us across the country and if this breeder does not have the means for an attorney, he will have no voice.

Many don’t.

It is with great respect we ask you please make sure this man’s property was not confiscated without due process of law and if appropriate return his dogs BEFORE they are spayed and neutered.


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