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6 bulldog pups found in suitcase; tag leads to Toledo man's arrest


A litter of puppies and their mother, now in the care of the Toledo Area Humane Society, were found abandoned last week. The pups were inside the suitcase.

The Blade/Dave Zapotosky
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Authorities say a Toledo man made a crucial mistake when he allegedly tried to abandon a litter of puppies by stuffing them into a canvas suitcase and leaving them behind a city business.

He left the luggage tag with his contact information attached to the bag, officials said.

Gene Boros, a Toledo Area Humane Society cruelty officer, filed two counts of abandonment Tuesday against Howard Davis of East Hudson Street for leaving the bag and the puppies next to a trash bin behind 3442 Stickney Ave.

The bag of six English bulldog puppies — three males and three females — along with their mother was picked up April 4 by the Lucas County Dog Warden’s office.

The business is about a quarter mile from the home of Mr. Davis, who was in the process of moving when he was questioned at his home by Officer Boros last week.

Mr. Davis could not be reached for comment.

By time the dog warden’s personnel arrived on Stickney, passers-by had found the dogs and unzipped the bag to give them some air, said Julie Lyle, Lucas County dog warden. “But they said they had found the bag zipped with the mother dog standing next to it,” Ms. Lyle said.

The dog and puppies were transferred to the Humane Society on Thursday because the dog warden doesn’t handle abandonment cases, Ms. Lyle said.

“There are witnesses who said that the female is indeed Mr. Davis’ dog and that he had been trying to sell puppies,” said John Dinon, executive director of the Toledo Area Humane Society.

Mr. Davis said he had not abandoned the dogs and had given them to someone in Michigan, Mr. Dinon said.

Mr. Davis was to be charged with two counts — one for the adult dog and the other for the puppies — of either first-degree or second-degree misdemeanor abandonment.

It was unclear Tuesday the level of offenses for which Mr. Davis would be charged.

First-degree misdemeanor abandonment carries a maximum of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine; second-degree misdemeanors carry up to 90 days in jail and a $750 maximum fine.

Mr. Davis will be issued a citation and given a court date, but he was not arrested, said Mr. Dinon.

The mother, now named Maddie, and the pups are doing well at the Humane Society.

They will be going to a foster home by the end of the week. They won’t be available for adoption for at least four weeks, officials said, but because they are part of a cruelty case, that time might be extended.

Contact Tanya Irwin at: or 419-724-6066.

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