LACHUTE, Que. - Animal rights advocates say they have found 37 malnourished dogs chained to trees on a property northwest of Montreal.
The Huskies were discovered Saturday in a wooded area near Lachute, Que. after the advocates received a tip about their condition.
Diane Gallant, a member of the group World Event to End Animal Cruelty, said the dogs were hungry and thirsty and appeared to have been chained up for a long time.
The Huskies ranged in age from eight months to 10 years, she said.
"I'm a dog lover," Gallant said Sunday. "I don't think a dog should spend its whole life chained to a tree with a five-foot chain...They are basically just sleeping in their poo and their pee."
Gallant said she spoke with the owner of the dogs, who lives nearby and appeared unable to properly care for them.
Quebec government spokeswoman Helene Sauvageau said the local SPCA is also working on the case.
Sophie Fournier, another animal rights activist who visited the site near Lachute, said they've found homes for seven dogs but about 30 still remain.
Their condition is not good, said Fournier, who runs Sophie's Dog Adoption in Montreal. "The majority of them are extremely skinny."
But the situation in Lachute points to a larger problem in Quebec, Gallant said.
Quebec has long been considered the puppy mill capital of North America, with an estimated 800 unregulated breeding operations in Montreal alone.
The province is in the process of introducing new animal welfare regulations designed to crack down on puppy and kitten mills in the province.
The rules would include minimum standards of care and cleanliness and norms for euthanizing unwanted pets.