Columbus, Ohio (AP) -- The Humane Society of the United States has accused Petland Inc. of scheming to sell sick puppies to thousands of unsuspecting consumers.
The animal protection group is suing Petland, based in Chillicothe, Ohio. The suit was filed Monday in federal court in Phoenix by attorneys for Humane Society members and people who say they bought sick puppies.
The Humane Society says the pet store chain indicated the puppies came from high-quality breeders and were healthy.
The group says its investigation shows many puppies were bred in horrific conditions in mills or through brokers such as the Hunte Corp., based in Goodman, Mo.
Petland says it's outraged and disappointed by what it calls false accusations. It says it offers "healthy, happy and well-socialized pets."
Hunte hasn't returned a message seeking comment.
(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
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