Lawyers for the Troy couple accused of torturing and selling dozens of diseased animals out of their Campbell Avenue home met in Troy City Court on Thursday to schedule a trial date.
Meanwhile, many of the pets removed from Michelle and David Hempstead’s home have been given a second chance at life in new homes.
Ryan Bergami adopted a Yorkie taken from the home back in January. Lucy was one of nearly 100 pets removed from the deplorable conditions inside the Hempstead’s home.
Court documents show that the three-year-old dog had dental disease, sores on her legs and ears, scars around her neck, and an untreated leg fracture when she was discovered in the home.
Bergami wasted no time seeking a professional opinion about Lucy’s injured leg. He soon received some bad news.
“I took her to the animal hospital and they said they would have to amputate her leg,” said Bergami.
And it just got worse from there.
“The surgeon said ‘this is just speculation, but.. it looks like there were impressions on her bone and leg like they tried to cinch her leg really really tight trying to amputate it at home,’” said Bergami.
Dr. Joseph Glennon operated on Lucy and told NEWS10 that he found the dog’s condition to be “suspicious,” and believes it’s possible a rubber band had been tied around Lucy’s left wrist, perhaps in an attempt to traumatically amputate the limb at home.
Dr. Glennon was able to safely amputate Lucy’s leg. She’s now begun the journey to recovery under Bergami’s care.
“She’s like a totally different puppy,” said Bergami. “You can tell she’s not in pain anymore. “
But Bergami says it makes him sick to think about what his dog endured just months ago.
“An animal is like a family member. She’s like my daughter,” said Bergami. “I can’t imagine anyone treating animals they way that family did.”
The case against the Hempsteads has been adjourned until April 18th.