Animals seized from Milwaukee home, man charged after 100+ found

A Milwaukee man is charged with 12 total counts after police said more than 100 animals were rescued from his home Saturday, Dec. 10.

Prosecutors accuse 46-year-old Larry McAdoo of keeping a variety of animals – including dogs, turtles and alligators – in poor condition at his home near 9th and Hadley. 

Police were first called to the home on Dec. 9 for an animal cruelty complaint. Upon entry, a criminal complaint states officers smelled a "strong and overpowering odor of animal feces and urine." McAdoo was arrested, and the house was searched over the course of Dec. 9 and Dec. 10.

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Once in custody, the complaint states McAdoo told police in a Mirandized interview that he "takes dogs in for other people and finds them new homes," and that none of them belonged to him. He initially denied knowledge of the conditions that the dogs were kept in, but when shown photos "admitted things had gotten out of control."

"At least" eight dogs were living in "unsanitary" conditions, per the complaint. He tried to blame the conditions on three kids – ages 16, 17 and 18 – who "didn't clean up" but later claimed responsibility. When it came to veterinary care, he said he "does not take them to the vet, instead attempting to fix the issue himself."

In all, McAdoo is charged with two counts of mistreatment of animals and 10 counts of negligently providing improper animal shelter sanitation standards. The complaint states prosecutors have the right to add more counts for "any charges for which it believes is supported by probably cause."

McAdoo made his initial court appearance on Dec. 14, and the court issued a $3,000 signature bond. He is due back in court Dec. 30 for a preliminary hearing.

Photo gallery: Animals rescued from home

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Alligator rescued from home near 9th and Hadley, Milwaukee

Animals seized, details of conditions

In all, the complaint states MADACC seized 113 animals:

  • 25 dogs
  • 23 birds (chickens, ducks, parakeets, pigeons, a turkey, a macaw and others)
  • 14 rats
  • 8 hamsters
  • 7 hedgehogs
  • 6 lizards
  • 6 rabbits
  • 5 guinea pigs
  • 4 cats
  • 4 chinchillas
  • 3 tortoises
  • 2 alligators
  • 2 snakes
  • 1 goat
  • 1 ferret
  • 1 raccoon

Warning: Some of the details below may be disturbing to some readers.

The complaint states "various reptiles" were housed in the attic and kept in aquarium tanks that "were not recently cleaned." None of the tanks had clean water and the temperature was 60 degrees – too cold for the species present. Some tanks did not have heat lamps. Soon after being seized from the home, but before it could receive medical care, a lizard died due to the conditions.

Two alligators were also in the attic, per the complaint. The reptiles – one 2 ½ feet long, the other 3 ½ feet long – were housed in a 60-gallon tank full of "filthy" water and "animal waste." 

Another 60-gallon tank contained a two difference species of tortoise, the complaint states. The glass of the tank was "coated in feces" and there was no substrate in the tank, which is needed so the tortoises don't develop sores on their feet. A snapping turtle was kept in a 10-gallon tank with a "thin layer" of water that was "caked" with feces and not deep enough to drink or swim. The turtle had become deformed due to the conditions and was showing signs of metabolic bone disease.

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Two corn snakes were kept in a 12-by-12 "cube" without hear sources, per the complaint. The size of the enclosure was too small for one snake, let alone two, officials said. There was no water and the cage was full of feces and shed skin.

In the basement, the complaint states 17 dogs were found. There were "large amounts of dog feces and urine" mixed with wood chip bedding on the floor. There was not food and a bucket of cloudy, yellow water. The dogs were being kept two to a pen. One of the dogs was a French bulldog that was malnourished with several injuries. Due to the dog's condition, surgery was deemed "inhumane," and the dog was euthanized. Two Boston terriers were among the 17 dogs, according to the complaint. There were holes in the bottom of their pen that were later deemed to be rat holes.

Upon intake at MADACC, a chicken and a raccoon had to be euthanized. 

Some already deceased animals were left at the scene.