POWHATAN, VA (WWBT) - A Powhatan man said he did care for his dogs day and night, but a judge didn't see it that way.
Randy Odum lost one legal battle today over his thirty dogs, mostly Yorkies, seized from his property on Academy Road last Friday. Authorities also found more than 800 marijuana plants.
Powhatan Animal Control told the judge the odor from feces and urine inside Odum's basement was so bad it took their breath away. After lengthy testimony, the judge ordered the dogs be forfeited to the county and Odum must $20,000 to appeal.
Animal Control said that's how much money it will take to care for the thirty dogs seized from Odum's property should he decide to appeal. The county has already spent over $3,000 on the dogs in one week. Odum was ordered to pay that back.
"It's basically just housing the animals, vet care, grooming, flea treatment," said Sgt. Christine Boczar with animal control.
A veterinarian testified three dogs stood out as being in bad shape including one with severe dental disease and missing teeth. The vet told the judge that dog was likely emaciated because it couldn't chew its food. Odum said he's been raising Yorkies for sale for 16 years.
He claimed he washes one dog each night, that all get vet care and he routinely cleans their cages in his basement where the dogs were kept. But a Powhatan county deputy testified all the dogs stunk, they had feces matted in their hair and fleas.
"(What do you have to say about not getting your dogs back?), no comment miss," said Odum.
Animal Control tells us the dogs are now happy, yet nervous in their new surroundings in their facility. They've had an outpouring of people wanting to adopt.
"The answering machine is full every morning there's people waiting at the door we appreciate the outpouring of help for the dogs. Unfortunately they're not available. We have to do it by the book," said Sgt. Boczar.
Odum has ten days from today to appeal the judge's decision. Animal Control tells me he could still face animal cruelty charges.
Odum was also ordered to not own or possess any animal. He's expected in court in October for the drug charges.