By Fred Woods
“One of the worst cases of animal cruelty I have ever seen,” said Opelika veterinarian Dr. Buddy Bruce, Lee County Rabies Officer and consulting veterinarian for animal abuse and cruelty.
Bruce was referring to a Lee County Circuit Court case tried earlier this month. Deanalyn Reing, age 50, of Rockford, was found guilty of five counts of second degree cruelty to animals. Reing was being retried before a jury in circuit court after appealing a district court decision that found the defendant guilty of these same charges in April of last year.
Reing’s sentence included:
– 12 months sentence, suspended;
– Two years supervised probation, including probation officer visits/inspectios to Reing’s premises in Coosa County monthly for the term of probation;
– Reing cannot have more than 25 dogs at any one time for the two years;
– Reing must complete an online course on animal behavior and well-being;
– Reing must report to the Coosa County Mental Health Facility for evaluation; and
– Reing must pay $2,300 restitution at the rate of $100 per month.
Reing formerly owned and operated Southern Dogs Rescue, located in the 400 block of Lee Road 4, in Auburn. In December 2013 Lee County authorities, following up on a citizen’s report, discovered some 20 dogs confined on the property, apparently abandoned with no food and stale, scum-covered, water. The dogs were walking around in mud and feces.
Bruce said the appearance of the dogs would remind one of pictures of concentration camp victims being liberated at the end of World War II. Several of the dogs had additional health issues, and six were removed from the premises in an attempt to save their lives.
Reportedly Reing had been selling young and mature dogs to animal dealers in the northeastern United States for adoption. According to Dr. Bruce, the demand for puppies as well as older dogs far exceeds the supply in this part of the country, with animals typically selling for several hundred dollars apiece. There apparently was no explanation as to why Reing had abandoned these dogs.