Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt announced today that his office has filed suit and obtained a temporary restraining order (TRO) against Little Bit Ranch, a dog breeder in Sullivan County, for violations of the Animal Care Facilities Act (ACFA) and for operating without a license. The lawsuit and application for temporary restraining order without notice were filed on Friday of last week, and the temporary restraining order was granted on Friday.
The lawsuit notes that the owners of Little Bit Ranch, Angela and Danny Noland, have been operating without an Animal Care Facilities Act license since January 31, 2020, and roughly 50 violations of the ACFA have been found by the Missouri Department of Agriculture across eight inspections since August of 2019.
“As we did in this case, we will take swift action against substandard or non-compliant breeders in Missouri wherever possible,” said Attorney General Schmitt. “Moreover, these substandard or non-compliant breeders cast responsible breeders in a bad light. I look forward to continuing to work with the Missouri Department of Agriculture to address non-compliant breeders across the state.”
The TRO application notes, "The eight inspections demonstrated that Defendants’ facility had inadequate shelter; unsanitary enclosures with an excess accumulation of feces and food waste; dogs suffering due to inadequate or untimely veterinary care, including multiple instances of dogs with loose, sometimes bloody stool, matted fur, severe eye infections, and other health issues; sharp, rusted points in animal enclosures; living spaces that were too small and that did not contain adequate flooring; food receptacles that contained mold, caked food, and even a maggot; and Defendants have repeatedly failed to provide access to potable unfrozen water.”
The last inspection conducted by the Missouri Department of Agriculture, which occurred on April 20, 2020, found multiple new and recurring violations of the ACFA.
The lawsuit states that the ACFA license issued to Angela and Danny Noland expired on January 31, 2020, and Little Bit Ranch has been operating without a license since.
The TRO application can be found here: https://ago.mo.gov/docs/default-source/press-releases/2019/2020-05-15-application-for-tro.pdf?sfvrsn=de49bf4a_2
The granted TRO can be found here: https://ago.mo.gov/docs/default-source/press-releases/2019/little-bit-tro.pdf?sfvrsn=1d138a8f_2.
The lawsuit can be found here: https://ago.mo.gov/docs/default-source/press-releases/2019/2020-05-15-noland-petition.pdf?sfvrsn=5b68f46d_2