04/04/2013 05:34 EDT | Updated 06/04/2013 05:12 EDT

Manitoba couple pleads guilty in major animal abuse case

A Gull Lake couple has pleaded guilty in what’s being called one of the worst cases of dog abuse in Manitoba’s history.

Peter Chernecki and his wife Judith pleaded guilty Thursday to seven counts under the Animal Care Act. Several other charges against the pair were stayed.

The dogs were kept in two buildings with no windows and were never allowed outside.

Many of the animals who were seized from the home were wounded, covered in feces and severely malnourished. At least 34 of the dogs had to be euthanized after they were seized because they were in such poor condition.

The Winnipeg Humane Society took in a number of the dogs and sent some of the surviving animals to a well-known dog shelter in the United States called DogTown.

In 2010, Peter told CBC News the and his wife were only trying to help out stray animals abandoned at the local landfill.

The Cherneckis are scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 17.

They face a maximum penalty of six months in jail and a $5,000 fine.