LAKEFIELD — A Lakefield woman has received a court summons on multiple counts of animal cruelty, ranging from felony to misdemeanor. Happy Tails Pet Salon owner Amanda Lee Martens, 37, faces two counts of animal cruelty for reported negligence resulting in the death of an animal, as well as one count of cruelty to animals for negligence causing substantial bodily harm to an animal.
Martens also faces two counts of animal cruelty, which carries a sentence of up to 90 days in jail and/or a $1,000 fine.
The charges stem from the March 16, 2021 report of animal neglect by pet owners who allegedly hired Martens to care for their pets at their rural Jackson County residence while they were on a two-day vacation. weeks.
According to the complaint, Martens had to come regularly to the residence to give the animals food and water, and to let the dog out. During this time, Martens assured the family that she had visited the animals and that they were fine. However, security footage from the pet owner’s home reportedly showed Martens only went there to check on the animals the day before the family was due to return. While still on vacation, the pet owner said he received a call from Martens that his beagle had passed away, although he was in good health before the trip.
Martens later admitted via text that she had not been on the property for most of the time the owners had left and refunded their money, according to the report.
Upon arriving home, the owners told a Jackson County deputy that there was feces and urine throughout the house, and their cat was found lying in its litter near death. Veterinary records indicated the cat had fluid in its lungs and had to be put down.
Another family member had left three dogs in Martens’ care over the holidays, all of which allegedly showed signs of neglect. The dogs had been brought to Martens’ business to look after, and after returning one dog had to be taken to the vet for an extended period of time to be treated for kidney problems which the vet said were caused by dehydration. The dog died while still in the care of the veterinarian.
The remaining two dogs showed signs of dehydration and rash in the kennel, respectively. The owner said that when she went to pick up the dogs, all three were covered in urine and the blankets in their crates were soaked with it.
The deputy in charge of this case made several attempts to speak with Martens. All have failed. She is due to appear in court for the first time on May 18. If convicted, she faces a maximum sentence of two years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine for each of the felony charges and one year in prison and/or a $3,000 fine for the misdemeanor charge. severe.