Animal control officers arrest woman after finding 60 dogs in home

An East County animal rescuer with 60 dogs at her home was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of cruelty to animals.

Authorities found scores of filthy, unhealthy dogs in cages stacked throughout Alice Via’s two-bedroom home on Moreno Avenue, Dan DeSousa of San Diego County Animal Services said.

Most of the dogs in the 65-year-old woman’s house were boxers and Chihuahuas, confined in crates stacked several high in various rooms, he said.

“Many of the dogs have skin conditions, upper respiratory disease or other illnesses,’ DeSousa said. ‘In addition, most ... have injuries to their feet and noses from trying to escape from their crates.’

Veterinarians evaluated the animals, which apparently were being let out of their cages only once a day, before taking them to various county shelters.

Via is expected to face ‘numerous’ animal cruelty and neglect charges, according to DeSousa.