• Prosecutors say woman starved kittens during break-up with boyfriend


    TACOMA, Wash. - Prosecutors say a Pierce County woman allowed her two kittens to starve to death while she was going through a break-up with her boyfriend.

     Rachel Dudley, 25,  was charged with two counts of first-degree animal cruelty Thursday.

    Prosecutors said the kittens were discovered on March 28 when the apartment manager checked Dudley’s unit after she appeared to have moved out.

    The manager called Dudley, who was staying with her mother, and said she would return and take care of the kittens. 

    On April 6, the manager checked inside the apartment and found that one of the kittens was dead.  The other was emaciated and staggered when it walked.  The manager gave the surviving kitten food and water and called Tacoma Animal Control.  The kittens were transported by Animal Control to the Humane Society.

    Prosecutors said that a veterinarian who examined the kittens said one kitten had died from chronic starvation and likely suffered considerably before death.

     The live kitten was severely dehydrated and had to be euthanized two days later.

     According to authorities, Dudley told animal control officers that she had last been to the apartment on March 6 or 7 and explained she was going through a bad break-up with her boyfriend and didn’t think about the kittens. 

    When asked how she thought the kittens died, Dudley said, “They probably starved to death,” investigators said.

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