By Shereen Siewert
WAUSAU — An Aniwa couple is facing multiple criminal charges after police seized two dozen animals from their home who were being held in conditions so horrifying a 3-month-old puppy had to be put to death.
Three cats, 20 dogs and a potbellied pig were seized, according to court documents. Most were kept in wire cage kennels amid blankets soaked with urine and covered in feces, police said. At least three of the animals are suspected stolen.
Kimberly Lawrence, 43, and Randy Diels, 37, are being held in the Marathon County Jail on multiple charges of intentional animal mistreatment, intentional dognapping, mistreatment of animals causing death, and other related charges. They are due to appear in court this afternoon.
When police arrived at the couple’s home on Nov. 14, investigators found animals did not have adequate food or water, and some were housed in cages so small they were unable to stand up or move, according to court documents.
Marathon County filed a lawsuit Friday against Lawrence and Diels that asks a judge to order the couple to pay thousands of dollars in expenses incurred by the Humane Society of Marathon County to care for the animals. Caring for the animals is costing $350 per day, along with an initial bill of $1,800. Additional veterinarian bills are expected as well.