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Iowans Rescue 56 Puppy Mill Dogs At Auction

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DE SOTO, Iowa — Local animal rescue groups returned early Sunday morning from a dog auction in Missouri. The volunteers planned to bring back 30 dogs, but they ended up rescuing nearly twice as many.

“It was a sell-out auction for Julie’s Jewels and they also had consignment dogs there from a list of other breeders. So there was every kind of dog there you can imagine,” says Amy Heinz, founder of AHeinz57 Pet Rescue and Transport in De Soto.

The dog breeding facility closed its doors earlier this month after coming under fire by the Humane Society and other animal rescue groups.

Volunteers from AHeinz57, Bailing Out Benji and Hope Animal Rescue made the six-hour drive to the auction. In just two days, the groups raised $13,000 to rescue puppy mill dogs. They brought back 56 dogs to Iowa. Their new caretakers say most of them are scared and unsocialized.

“The first night was actually harder than the auction itself,” says volunteer Leilani Shaw, “It was almost like she felt like she wasn’t worth of anything other than being in a cage.”

Shaw went to the auction and is fostering a 3-year-old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel that she calls, Bella. The little dog is doing better than some of the Huskies from Julie`s Jewels.

“Their ears are missing big chunks of them and the edges of the ears are bleeding and it’s from frostbite,” says Heinz.

All of the rescued dogs will get new names to go with their new lives. Instead of property, they are about to become someone’s pet.

“It`s a huge job. We won`t be sleeping anytime soon,” laughs Heinz.

Most of the dogs for sale went to rescue groups in the midwest. Tonight, the puppies and smaller breed dogs in foster homes in central Iowa.


    • Interesting?

      Bailing out Benji is a Facebook page it’s not an organization, Rescue or anything of the sort. Not a 501c3 not a non profit. They do what many do everywhere pass on information though theose people are not asking for $6000.00 to put a sign on a bus to promote themselves. It’s insulting for her to in anyway call herself a Rescue or lead others to believe it. If she is a Rescue she’s operating illegally something she has reported others for doing. She needs to practice what she preaches and WHO has been told this yet still reports it like she is. The other two Rescues are licensed with the State and can use the help to Vet these dogs. Thank you

      • Stephani

        No where in this article or anywhere else for that matter is it claimed that Bailing Out Benji is a rescue. Instead it stated “Volunteers from AHeinz57, Bailing Out Benji and Hope Animal Rescue made the six-hour drive to the auction.” Which in point of fact is what happened. What I find Interesting is your level of animosity towards a group of people who volunteer their time to help the dogs.

      • Canine Friend

        Because someone expects the same from the Rescue side of things to follow the rules like is expected from the Breeders, that’s animosity?
        For far to long there are people riding on the backs of those working very hard in Rescue with not only their time but also their hard earned money.
        For you to trivialize and try and turn the tables on the comment made must means you are OK with breaking the rules and OK with Bailing Out Benji to be asking for $6000.00 for an ad on a bus and then a month later ask for money for the care of dogs. Doesn’t look good.
        And this is now more then twice I have seen her portrayed as a Rescue. I have now checked out this page that I have never heard of until now and it is nothing more then passing along information which is great but that is what it is with a protest here and there and a booth at some events, great.
        People do this everyday and do not ask for thousands of dollars while animals sit and need medical care, food, toys, boarding and so much more and they want to spend $6000.00 on an Ad??
        I also looked on IDALS and they are not licensed, not an Org, not a non profit which is what the comment stated. When you read this “Local animal rescue groups” in the story and then it only names 3 groups from Iowa, actually two as only two are licensed Rescues, what would the public think?
        Why is Bailing Out Benji a Facebook page asking for money anyway for anything? If they are not a Rescue then why are they asking for money?
        Let the legal and reputable organizations who help animals receive the donations. Not a facebook page. This is embarrassing for those who work hard to save lives, no wonder the breeders laugh all the way to the bank.
        And it appears Melissa thought Bailing Out Benji was a Rescue by her comment which is why a person felt a need to set that straight, since Bailing Out Benji isn’t.

      • WD

        The video of the story that aired on the news last evening DID call all three organizations “rescues”. I think people are just trying to make sure that the facts are reported correctly. When researching the three groups, AHeinz57 & Hope are licensed with the state as shelters/rescues. They are also both registered with the Secretary of State. AHeinz57 is the only group that holds a 501c3, but Hope clearly states on their website they are actively pursuing one. Bailing Out Benji is not listed which means that it is not an “entity” of any type. To call them a rescue is incorrect and misleads the public. There is nothing wrong with people correcting incorrect information.

    • WD

      Melissa: Bailing Out Benji is NOT a rescue. WHO TV reported that incorrectly. She is a mere blogger who’s writings and actions often imply she is an entity of some sort. I addressed this in another post. I have nothing against the writer of the Blog, Bailing Out Benji. But I did do a quick search and found nothing that proves her to be anything but a blogger. To suggest otherwise is simply incorrect.

  • Nancy Glick

    If you would like to know the REAL story about some of these dogs, go to the facebook page of Second Chance Dog Rescue who spent 3 hours touring the facility of Julie’s Jewells and taking pictures of the animals there the day before they went to auction. Look closely at the ears of the dogs, their condition and the way they act when in a home they are familiar with. What you’ll see is a clean facility, clean and healthy animals who are happy and not a single dog with missing ear tips, wounds or any other of the things described by these so-called “rescuers”.

    Pay close attention to the rabid way the owner of Second Chance Dog Rescue is attacked by other “rescues” for daring to go to the facility of a breeder they themselves have harassed out of business for 4 long years to see if all she heard was true. You decide after reading the 7 part report and seeing the pictures who is telling the truth. Also note what Denise Clark of Second Chance says about the sociability of the dogs, the fact that they already had names and knew them and the way they interacted with the owners during her tour.

    It’s true that the owners of Julie’s Jewels turned away WHO when they tried to do an interview a few weeks earlier, but if you paid attention to the way the reporter acted and what he said, would YOU have invited him into your home or facility? I wouldn’t. He was rude, condescending and already had the opinion that these were horrible people. A reporter should be unbiased and this one was anything but unbiased. He didn’t appear to be doing anything more than looking for a story with “shock value”. I have yet to see WHO cover the good side of dog breeding. There’s no shock in that. I don’t know of a reputable breeder who would welcome being interviewed by WHO. We’ve seen people they’ve interviewed in the past and seen how they edit interviews to make good people look bad, whether it’s politicians or dog breeders.

    Denise Clark did her interview and reported the full story with pictures and was accused by a WHO employee of doing a “fluff” piece on the facebook page. She received no payment, nor did she receive any of the dogs. She went there with the intent of asking if she could help any of the dogs who might be in need and found NO dogs in need of rescue. If WHO had gone to Julie’s Jewels with honest intentions, the story might have been theirs. Instead they got the same lack of respect that they showed the owners. They stated the area they showed with a dirt lot and an old shed in their video and claimed it was where dogs were housed, even though they had no idea if it was true. It was actually a horse lot and the pictures and report at Second Chance will show the truth. They can delete this post from their site, but not from my facebook page.

    • Sally

      If Julie’s Jewels really had cleaned up their act, I think they would have welcomed WHO into their facility and relished in the opportunity to show their side of things. Yes, WHO does sensationalize, mot news stations do, it is what draws the viewers.
      If JJ was as great and wonderful as you say it was, there shouldn’t have been anything for WHO to sensationalize so 1 of 2 things would have happened, they wouldn’t have done the report at all, or they would have shown what a wonderful place JJ was and brought her additional business.

    • Sharon C.

      According to whom? YOU? You’re a breeder yourself! Your word is hardly to be taken seriously here, is it, since you’re anything but unbiased. For all we know, you run something worse than she did!

    • Phyl

      Denise from SCDR cares about the dogs truly? Anonone who still befriends a dog shooter/killer/burner/bagged that did that to a neighbors beloved family is stating quite clearly…by that action…it is not about the dogs or the people who love them, but rather about themselves. There was no legitimate reason for that dog “breeder” (puppy miller) to shoot their neighbors dog. If Denise had any sense she would have distanced herself from the dog shooter/killer/burner/bagger. County health department states if your believe you have come in contact with a rabid animal be it a dog, bat, skunk, etc. contact your medical doctor, contact your local sheriff/police department. contain the animal and try to keep it alive for observation. Were any of these steps taken by the dog shooter/killer/burner/bagger? How about the shooter/killers concern about their neighbors? Their neighbors children? Their Neighbors Animals/life stock? What about the small nearby town with a lot of elderly/children not far from the incident? what about the sheep herd just to their east with Great pyreness or the organic dairy farm just east of that? Don’t you think they should have been alert just incase this supposed Stray dog had been there? There was no legimate reason to shoot/kill/burn/bag the dog. And still waiting on the action to be reported to local county paper which publishes weekly Sheriff reports. Those missing their beloved dog that was shot/killed/burned/bagged is in there. Do not have time to go thru all of our 1000+ dog care/training books. but here is another one for you Nancy Glick …J.M. Evans dog trainer/care author of numerous dog related books. Book Doglopaedia page 141 ” If a dog is suspected of having rabies, avoid touching it, barricade it by some means in a small room or some other confined space, and report the situation to the police, animal control officer or veterinary surgeon immediately day or night.

  • doug williams

    any dog that is an kennel is “sensational’ for those who think dogs should all be on velvet pillows.. I personally think that you Sally should be interviewed at any hour of any any day ever .. and allow anyone who asks to enter you place of business and your homw, inspect all of your records. and film everything that you do at any time.. ok with you? Read the story at second chance rescue and see the pictures why would a real rescue lie?

    • Sally

      Big difference between me and Julie’s Jewels, I do not run a business profiting off of the lives of others. I don’t believe WHO wanted to look through her entire home, or come in any time day or night. If a breeder will not let you see where the dogs live, that should be a red flag. When we got our dog, the breeder welcomed us onto their property. We were introduced to both parents of our pup. We saw where the dogs lived.
      I don’t know why a real rescue would lie. You seem to be implying the AHein57 is not a real rescue and they are liars. What makes Second Chance any more honest then AHeinz57? And, actually, my dog DOES have a big fun fur bed in the middle of the living room. Why would I want a dog if I was just going to throw it out in the backyard in a little kennel all the time? If a dog isn’t going to be 1) for protection 2) for companionship it will eventually just become an expense and hassle and probably not be treated very well. It’s physical needs may be met, but, it’s pack needs probably won’t.

      • Faith Miller

        Sally ALL business and I do mean ALL businesses make a profit off of someones’s lives. The employees give up their freedom and much of their life to work for the boss who reaps MOST of the benifets and gets rich on their work. That is how ALL businesses work. Yes people do have a choice in the matter (sort of cause we all got bills to pay) The only things in this world that are not being used are the incredibly wealthy, the self employed and the dead. There is NOTHING wrong with making a living off of a business be that business selling groceries or selling dogs. I have a hard time seeing where the big deal is if I as a rabbit breeder make a profit from selling rabbits. It must mean that I have rabbits that are in demand(ie good healthy stock) and I must be a good business person. Now isn’t that what having a business is all about?
        And another point HOW in the hell is BUYING DOGS considered rescue????? Especially for the LARGE sums some of the dogs were bought for? The breeder Was HOUNDED out of business by ARA and FORCED by them to sell the dogs at auction. Other breeders also sold dogs there. I bet they ALL laughed their collective asses off at all the “rescuers” that paid them for their dogs. All that did was make the breeders more money and solidify the fact that they the breeders have a GOOD outlet for even the old dogs! So who is the dummy here? Not the breeders!

        I also want to commend Second Chance for the brave way they told the truth! There needs to be MORE rescues that are open minded and realize that NOT ALL breeders are evil, just like not all RESCUES are good.

      • BKTeem

        Ugh…FAITH MILLER…not good! I understand you are trying to make a point but disagree whole-heartedly that “selling dogs” should be profitable, or that selling animals in general should be a “business”! In fact, I’m against the word “selling” of any “living” thing as it is. Dogs are not “merchandise” to be processed, displayed, bartered, auctioned, traded or sold. They are living beings that deserve our respect, kindness and assistance to co-exist with us on this earth. They are domesticated beings who’s existence relies on basic needs provided by Humans: Exercise, Medical Care, Attention and Affection. Nobody can give PROPER care to that many animals, and the proof is out there for the world to see. Disfigured, scarred dogs does not speak highly of Julie’s so called care and love. It will be interesting to learn from AHeinz57 (if they share) how many of the dogs have health issues and how many are scarred from under the thumb of Julie’s crew. I think those stats will speak volumes over any fans of Julie’s Jewels!

        I’d bet her furniture and electronics were kept in better condition than her “profit”.

    • WD

      Breeders can turn away the media, but it is protocol for the state inspector to stop by unannounced to any licensed facility either for a local inspection or to follow up on a complaint. If breeders have a problem with this…there is something wrong.

  • Jean

    How did Julie’s Jewels end up on the top 100 horrible breeders (puppy mill list) if her reputation and facilities were so perfect? I think there are 2 sides to every story, and people should also look up the story about Julie’s Jewels being on the horrible 100 list, and she was on there because of her bad USDA inspections.

  • Jenny

    As someone who has personally purchased a dog from Julie’s Jewels, I can easily say that Julie’s Jewels was NOT a reputable breeder. At least in my experience. We supposedly bought a purebred golden retriever, but never received the pedigree that was supposed to be sent to us. Called many times, but never received any call back. At only one years old, our dog had extreme health problems, which she suffered from her whole short life.

  • denisecarolclark

    I simply talked with Julie and her family and looked through all the buildings on her property. There were no dogs with torn up ears and if it was frostbite, wouldn’t it have healed over by now? I cannot believe Aheinz would hurt a dog on purpose but maybe the dogs fought in between Julie’s and the rescues. I don’t know what happened. I just know what I saw and those dogs were in great shape and very well socialized. They allowed me to pet them and ran around with us. They were all awesome. I was warned that one dog might try to bite but it did not. She was as gentle as could be. I went there to see the facts for myself as I don’t believe everything I hear. I wanted to know if there was anything I could to help the dogs. I cannot help that the place was not a puppy mill and was not filthy. I saw what I saw and that’s that for me.

    I also congratulate all the people that worked to bring the dogs to rescue. I just don’t want to see the dogs “used” or “exploited” for donations.

    • Canine Friend

      Oh please DeniseCarolClark, if you ride the fence much longer with these comments you may take a tumble into some Puppy mill dog poo. You cannot be a true Rescue, an advocate for animals after what I have read on your page.
      If you have a license it should be ripped from your fingers and set on fire, what a disgrace to these poor dogs and those who work hard at making a difference for them while exposing those who do this to them.
      Change the Laws and enforce the ones you have Iowa, that is the only thing that will put a stop to this catastrophic mess.
      You have a “Rescue” publicly siding with the Puppy Mills!
      Iowa has more problems then just Puppy Mills no thanks to Second Chance Dog Rescue and those portraying themselves as Rescues and asking for money. Good Luck to you.

      • Phyl

        second that! feel very sad for any dog that ends up in your hands be it for finding a new home or in your care.

    • BKTeem

      Denise: Aheinz has a photo of a Husky on her wall with a missing ear tip. I believe it states that this was one of Julie’s dogs. The explanation would be…?

  • Mark

    Denise, I have seen the dog with the ear tips missing. They are not fresh wounds but continue to fester and we were told that it was from frost bite. I thought you only talked when facts backed up your statements. To actually accuse AHeinz57 of hurting these dogs for publicity clearly shows the money donated to you by puppy mills has shaped your opinions. The 2013 USDA report lists an incident where the leg of a puppy was trapped in the cage and the dogs on the other side had been chewing on it. This had gone on for at least a couple of days, guess that’s a lie too? Your pathetic!

    • BKTeem

      MARK: Can you share who told or confirmed the ear tip missing was frostbite. I had heard it too, and would like to share it with a little more some substance behind it. I believe it’s true, but there are doubters out there. Thank you.

  • Denise Clark

    Mark, you have made a dire mistake that will cost the dogs! I said I CANNOT believe that Aheinz would hurt a dog!!!!! People have been telling me that she hurt the dogs herself and I have said NO SHE WOULD NOT DO THAT!!!!!!!

    • WD

      Reading your comment Denise, you do “imply” that in some way AHeinz or her transport crew COULD HAVE hurt the dogs or that the dogs were injured while in her care. To even make the suggestion is no better than to say it happened, especially when there is no fact to back it up. Perhaps choose your words wiser next time to prevent people from challenging them.

    • Mark

      Denise, this is a clear example of you hanging out with the wrong people. Only a puppy miller/breeder would make such accusations about AH57. Seems to me that you need to reconsider the crowds you associate yourself with. Also, maybe you should consider proof reading your statements prior to hitting that button on your mouse. This statement too is somewhat alarming as it sounds a little like some sort of threat to me however I doubt that is your intent??

    • Phyl

      Denise…”Mark you have made a dire mistake that will cost the dogs! And you are threatening this because?

  • Ashley

    Denise Clark you are disgusting sticking up for this so called reputable breeder. What she was doing to these animals was inhumane and atrocious, of course when people come to look at her facilities suddenly all the dogs who are injured and sick are no where to be found. That is what breeders do, and what this rescue group does is offer these poor dogs a life outside of breeder hell with families who love them, and if you cannot understand that then keep your snide comments to yourself and you go live in the hell hole these poor dogs have been trapped inside their entire lives!

  • Lilreb

    To all of you sticking up for Julie’s Jewels……If they were such a reputable breeder, why would they close up shop?

  • Phyl

    Actually the remaining pup millers in Iowa have not figured out yet that by Julie Jewels sending their dogs off to auction was not such a great move on the remaining puppy millers part. By Julie Jewels last ditch effort to glean the last bit of money they could squeeze out of their “stock” they opened the door to let rescues or private bidders have access to their mistakes/uncared for animals. Each and every animals purchased at that auction has a history of their neglect and abuse.

  • BatDogMom

    I have a great idea. Make a law where if a breeder racks up more than 5 violations for 2 years running that they are immediately closed down. They can sell off their dogs and equipment, but all their profits are put into a fund that pays for more inspectors.

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