Anthony And Christine Berry Plead Guilty To Calgary Animal Cruelty Charges

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CALGARY – A Calgary couple have pleaded guilty to animal cruelty charges in what is being called the largest animal seizure in the city's history.

Anthony and Christine Berry were charged with causing unnecessary pain, suffering or injury to an animal and failing to provide suitable and adequate care to an animal.

Calgary Humane Society officers seized 92 animals from their home in a residential neighbourhood in 2014.

The animals included 69 rabbits, 21 hamsters, one cat and one dog that were in distress due to unsanitary conditions, untreated medical concerns and a lack of basic care.

Some of the animals were euthanized because they were in such poor condition.

The couple have each been fined $6,900 and are prohibited from ever owning more than one spayed or neutered cat or dog.

"While this case is disturbing, it is encouraging to see it being taken seriously by the courts,'' Brad Nichols, a humane society spokesman said in a release Thursday.

"Considering the level of neglect and the fact the Berry's were rabbit enthusiasts who were heavily involved in the show community makes it that much more important to keep them away from animals for a significant period.''

The couple were charged and sentenced under the provisions of Alberta's Animal Protection Act.

Nichols said Anthony Berry was held in custody for several months before pleading guilty to assaulting a peace officer and uttering threats over the seizure of the animals.

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