Homeowner evicts tenant; discovers 80 dogs living in deplorable conditions

New Mexico

An animal hoarder with a history of animal cruelty has apparently been posing as a sanctuary in Deming.

Now, the owner of the property has shutdown the deplorable operation, and has become tasked with cleaning up the mess and figuring out what to do with the 80 dogs.

“To see dogs like this – it’s heart-wrenching,” said Randy Pirie. “And the town says, well, everything’s ok out there.”

Eighty dogs – inbred and without parvo shots – were found living on Pirie’s property in inhumane conditions.

“The ones we’ve rescued out of the house have never been out of the house,” he said. “The ones in the garage have never seen daylight. I let them out yesterday, they didn’t know what to do with the sun.”

He also discovered dozens of dead dogs and puppies in freezers.

Pirie – who lives in Connecticut – was planning on retiring in this Deming home, but now it’s unlivable. It has holes in the wall, and dog urine and feces covering the floor.

“The stench, if I could describe it to you, you wouldn’t want me to. You walk in the house, you gag.”

Pirie says the man responsible is his tenant Raymond Schmal. Under their lease agreement, it stated ‘no pets.’

Pirie says after trying to evict Schmal from across the country for not paying rent, he was finally successful – but Pirie couldn’t imagine what he’d see when he arrived in person this week.

“When I got down here Monday, there were still dogs in my house. He told me he never had dogs in the house,” he said. “It’s unbelievable that the Humane Society or anybody would allow this to happen.”

Schmal was apparently operating as ‘Ruff Ruff Animal Sanctuary.’

Records show it was just in August when an employee of the shoddy operation was charged with animal cruelty after 10 dogs allegedly died from neglect.

In 2013, Schmal himself faced animal cruelty charges when 40 cats and 12 dogs were removed from his California home for inhumane conditions.

“He couldn’t have dogs for three years in the state of California, so he came here.”

The realtor Pirie hired to lease out of the property never caught that. He now has a message for those thinking about becoming a landlord.

“Don’t do it. You know what? If you want to make money on a property, sell it.”

Pirie says the sanctuary passed routine inspections with the Deming-Luna County Humane Society. KRQE News 13 reached out to the Human Society but didn’t hear back.

KRQE News 13 also reached out to the sheriff’s office to see if they’d be pursuing criminal charges, but have not yet heard back on that either.

“They said this is a civil problem, not a criminal problem.”

Pirie says about 22 dogs have been taken from the property so far, some going to a rescue.

As far as clean up goes, he says Schmal has refused to help.

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