A dozen new cruelty charges filed against Great Dane breeder
By Bea Lewis Union Leader Correspondent
Great Dane Puppy
An eight-week-old Great Dane puppy whose mother was among those seized when a Wolfeboro woman was charged with animal cruelty. The Humane Society of the United States is carrying for the dogs and estimates it may spend as much as $500,000 providing the needed medical care, enrichment activities and food. (Bea Lewis/Union Leader Correspondent)
Christina Fay enters Ossipee District Court with her legal team, Attorney Jim Cowels of Wolfeboro and Kent Barker of Nashua. (Bea Lewis/Union Leader Correspondent)
OSSIPEE — The state has filed a dozen new animal cruelty charges against a Wolfeboro woman whose home was raided by authorities this summer resulting in the seizure of 72 Great Danes.
Christina Fay, 59, who is already facing two misdemeanor animals cruelty charges, appeared in court Wednesday with her legal team for a status conference to set deadlines for her upcoming trial.
Defense Attorney Kent Barker of Nashua, asked the judge for more time to prepare for trial, disclosing that the state had just filed 12 new charges that he had not yet had a chance to review.
The newest charges allege that Fay negligently permitted or caused dogs in her possession or custody to be subject to cruelty by being held in a chain link kennel in the basement of her residence with little lighting or ventilation and a high ammonia level. The kennel floor was covered in animal waste in which the dogs had to walk through, stand in or lay down on. The criminal complaints allege that dogs identified by number, sex and color, suffered from a variety of ailments including conjunctivitis in both eyes, moist dermatitis of the feet and a tail tip that was ulcerated and thickened to the point that a partial amputation was needed to alleviate the dog’s suffering.
A second charge alleges Fay housed 10 dogs in the foyer of her residence that was isolated by gating. The floor was slicked with animal waste creating high ammonia levels and one dog identified as “Fantasia” was suffering from “cherry eye” and conjunctivitis in both eyes, which was so severe she was blind. The same dog was also afflicted with oral papilloma lesions and surgery and veterinary care was necessary to alleviate her suffering.
Other complaints charge dogs in Fay’s possession or care had no access to food or water, had ear infections, pressure sores on their feet and that one dog had a pus-filled pressure sore on his right hind leg and required surgery and veterinary care to relieve its suffering.
Another dog, according to the complaints, was forced to live in a bedroom with a closed door in its own waste, was underweight and suffering from moderate to severe case of entropion and extropion, known as “diamond eye.” Other dogs had ulcerated, thickened and oozing lesions throughout his body, and also required surgery to relieve his pain.
Fay is further accused of having more than 60 Great Danes at her 149 Warren Sands Road dogs without lawful authority, and that she negligently deprived them or caused them to be deprived of necessary care or sustenance by not treating or inadequately treating their ailments.
“We’re anxious to get all the facts out so that (Fay) can be judged fairly on what truly happened versus what people said happened,” said Barker following the late morning hearing in Ossipee District Court.
“It’s been extremely difficult for her. We live in a time where people express outrage very quickly without knowing all the facts,” said Attorney James Cowels of Wolfeboro, who is also representing Fay.