Pet Sitter Responds to Neighbors Saying Nearly 40 Dogs Seized From House

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (June 29, 2014) — The woman who was hired to watch over nearly 40 dogs inside a home in Grand Rapids is responding to neighbors telling FOX 17 that the animals have been removed from the home.

The woman who owns the dogs has claimed she rescues sick dogs and also runs a grooming service, but neighbors said that the number of dogs inside got out of control.

“This was a hoarding situation and it wrecked me. I mean I’ve been worried about these dogs since November,” said Renee Miles.

Renee Miles said that after caring for Kimberly Savino`s dozens of dogs, she made it her mission to have the dogs taken out of  her northeast Grand Rapids home.

Neighbors tell FOX17 that Kent County Animal Control officers removed the nearly 40 dogs this week.

Miles said that she passed out flyers in the neighborhood to encourage the community to contact the city of Grand Rapids so that they change it`s animal ordinance.

“Currently Granville, East Grand Rapids, Battle Creek, Kalamazoo, and Walker all have ordinances. Grand Rapids does not, so I just think that it probably is easier for something like this to get out of control,” said Miles.

Miles said that she believes Savino thinks that she is helping the dogs, but instead created an unhealthy environment.

“There were 36 dogs that just wanted to be held. They just wanted to be petted. Like I said, I wasn’t welcome to sit around. I was being paid to maybe $15 bucks or so a trip to come in and it was unmanageable,” said Miles.

Miles said that she hopes the animals never return to the home, and that they  get the proper care that they deserve.

“I’m so relieved. Thank you. Thank you Kent County. I’ve been posting it all over Facebook and I’m like, thank you Kent County. You did the right thing. I wish it hadn’t taken six months, but it happened,” said Miles.

Kimberly Savino denied our request to speak with us for this story.


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  • John Adams

    I found that the person next door was the only person making a complaint that lived in the area. Seems that all of his complaints were made up and discounted by city officials. Thanks for taking care of the dogs that no one else wanted at a great cost and sacrifice to you Kim. You don't deserve the grief you got from several people who have deceptive motives. Officials have not examined the false allegations and acted prematurely before getting the full story. A clear case of abuse of power by lazy officials.

    • Kimberly Savino

      Thank you, John, and you are correct regarding the complaints. While the information presented by Fox 17 appears to be quite damning, much of it (especially the most recent article) is inaccurate. There is a whole other dimension to this situation that has not yet been shared with the public, much less with the officials. Our attorneys have clearly advised us to refrain from doing so prematurely, but it will be presented at the appropriate time. Again, thank you for keeping an open mind. It’s refreshing to hear to from people in this area who don’t necessarily believe that all they see in print or on tv is necessarily factual or accurate.

    • Ms T

      The way that particular house sits on that corner, the nieghbor(s) certainly can be irratated/disturbed with such a situation regarding that many dogs (or even cats for that matter) Who can possibly care correctly and humanly that many animals in that small of confines? People should take pride in their homes and nieghborhoods just by being respectable and clean, at the very least. I lived in this nieghbor hood (right near this house) And I can tell you the nieghbors are all wonderful. I would of complained too. Nobody has to hear dogs,especially that many, barking and yelping all hours,disturbing the peace. And that includes the smell! Owner(s)(?) like this do not deserve to own animals. Go live on an island with others like yourself–better yet a kennel!

  • Jenn

    I sure hope that the funds are too much to come up with and the animals can go to loving homes who will actually groom them and take them to the vet!