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Woman accused of debarking 4 dogs in Lancaster County is captured in Iowa

LANCASTER COUNTY — A 55-year-old Iowa woman accused of debarking four dogs in Lancaster County was taken into custody Friday afternoon, according to the Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office.

Denise L. Felling was taken into custody by the Iowa County Sheriff’s Office at about 4 p.m., authorities say. She is charged with eight felony counts of animal cruelty in Lancaster County.

Felling is expected to be extradited to Lancaster to face those charges, the DA’s office says.

Pennsylvania SPCA Officer Jennifer Nields filed the charges against Felling. She is accused of debarking a husky, a Doberman, a beagle mix and a Spaniel mix by shoving a rod-like object into the animals’ vocal chambers.

The manner that Felling is accused of using to debark the dogs is illegal, authorities say.

Felling formerly had a veterinarian’s license in Iowa; it has since been revoked, according to the DA’s office. She never obtained a license in Pennsylvania, but represented herself as a veterinarian to the Lancaster County woman who owned the dogs, authorities say.

The debarkings were done in Quarryville and Kinzers in Lancaster County.