100 animals covered in filth seized from exotic pet store, police say

Police seized about 100 animals from an exotic pet store Saturday after they said they found a variety of them dead or covered in their own waste.

The animals include three dogs, five guinea pigs, 14 snakes, 26 lizards and numerous hamsters, turtles, ferrets, rabbits and sugar gliders, Porter County Animal Shelter director Toni Bianchi told the Northwest Indiana Times.

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“There was a strong, pungent odor of feces, urine and dead animals emitting from the shop,” police said.

Police were called to the address after someone reported seeing a cage filled with eight dead birds in the trash near the business and smelling a foul scent from inside it.

Animal waste and seed covered the floor, and filthy cages were stuffed with animals covered in their own waste, investigators said.

Terry Driver, 27, told police that many of the animals were purchased when he bought the business. He said he was busy with personal matters and was unable to do much over the last week, according to the Times.

Driver was arrested and charged with animal neglect, according to the Times.