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Animal activists protest puppy adoption raffle

Reported by: Denise Rosch
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Updated: 3/06 9:06 am
LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) -- The fight over 27 dogs rescued in a pet store fire is heating up.

On Wednesday, animal rights activists demanded The Animal Foundation call off a scheduled raffle of the puppies.

The animals are the subject of intense interest ever since the owner of the Prince and Princess Pet Shop was arrested for setting her business on fire with the puppies trapped inside.

Store owner Gloria Lee and an accomplice sit in jail while the fate of these dogs is debated.

On Tuesday, The Animal Foundation announced a raffle will take place to give everyone a fair chance for a dog.

But animal activists are trying hard to stop it.

“The pet shop owner exploited them, and now the Animal Foundation is exploiting them. We just want the puppies to find good homes,” said Bryce Henderson, who is founder of the non-profit group No Kill Las Vegas. He and about a dozen supporters are rallying to stop the puppy raffle.

“I know this is Vegas, but gambling with a puppy's life is not the way to do this,” Henderson said.

News 3 checked in on the dogs at the Lied Animal Shelter, where they've been housed for more than a month. They appear healthy and playful.

The shelter is planning to begin an online raffle Friday with tickets costing $250 each.

But animal rights activists are hoping shelter executives will change their minds and turn the dogs over to a rescue organization instead.

”Money, it's all about the money, follow the money,” said Gina Greisen with Nevada Voters for Animals. “If they end up on Craigslist or something else goes wrong, their contracts they'll enforce them. Lied doesn't have the means to enforce their contracts.”

In a written statement to News 3, a shelter spokesperson says Lied will deny adoptions to raffle participants who do not meet all adoption requirements or "in the instance that the placement is not in the best interest of the dog."

Still, Henderson is not convinced.

“People purchasing a ticket in hopes of winning an animal they've never met that's never met them, that might not be a good way to find a new home,” Henderson said.

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