Officials: House fire reveals dogs in unsanitary conditions

Officials: House fire reveals dogs in unsanitary conditions

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A woman who lost two of her dogs in a house fire was arrested the next day on animal cruelty charges.

The Baton Rouge Police Department reported Tamekia Paige, 35, was booked into the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison on 18 counts of animal cruelty Wednesday. She was later released after posting the $9,000 bond.

The Baton Rouge Fire Department was called to her home on Sherbrook Avenue on Tuesday. Firefighters reported they rescued nine dogs and numerous cats from the fire. Paige was not at home at the time of the fire.

According to the probable cause report, an animal control officer was called to the scene of the fire. He reported seeing 18 small Maltese-Poodle mixes and a mixed Catahoula in small cages.

The report indicates the cages and the floor were covered in feces. It added a closer look revealed the dogs were matted with urine and feces.

Officials said all of the dogs were seized for their protection. They also said Paige showed up at animal control Wednesday morning and that's when she was arrested.

Firefighters reported arriving on the scene and seeing smoke billowing from the side of the house and the roof. Upon entry, they reportedly found flames in the kitchen area.

Officials said while firefighters were extinguishing the fire, they noticed pets running around inside. They ended up giving oxygen to some of the dogs.

Investigators reported the fire was caused by a pot left on the stove.

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