FORT WORTH (CN) – The State of Texas accuses a married couple and the wife’s sister of running puppy mills, misrepresenting the diseased bulldogs they sell for $2,000 to $3,000 apiece, falsely claiming to have bred the dogs themselves, and refusing to replace dead dogs with healthy, live ones.
The defendants are Kristy O’Neal dba EPuppyPro aka EPuppyPro.com; her husband, Charles O’Neal, also dba T.B. Elite Marketing LLC dba EPuppyPro.com and Lobopuppies.com; her sister, Melody Edwards dba Lobopuppies aka Lobopuppies.com; and Vickie O’Neal Alvord, an officer of T.B. Elite Marketing and epuppypro.com and lobopuppies.com.
The O’Neals operate out of North Richland Hills, Texas, Edwards out of Hurst.
The state alleges:
The defendants misrepresented the health of at least four sick puppies, claiming they had been checked by vets; one died the day after arrival; another one died soon thereafter; one has “two genetic disorders which left it unable to walk or stand.”
One puppy the defendants sold was ill on arrival and died within 6 weeks.
The defendants advertise their dogs with alleged testimonials from customers, but at least one such customer “made no such statements and remains dissatisfied with his or her purchasing experience.”
The defendants use AKC and other trademarks to advertise their dogs, but refuse to provide AKC papers when requested.
The defendants misrepresent themselves as the dogs’ breeders, but the dogs have tattoos indicating they were imported. One puppy, which Kristy O’Neal misrepresented as bred at her home and “her kids’ favorite” went to the purchaser “straight from the airport immediately after being imported.”
The state demands penalties of up to $20,000 per violation.