- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 16, 2014

ASPEN, Colo. (AP) - The owner of an Aspen dog-sledding operation has pleaded not guilty to animal cruelty charges, and a judge scheduled a trial for October.

Dan MacEachen entered his plea Tuesday after negotiations with prosecutors failed to produce a plea agreement.

MacEachen faces eight counts of animal cruelty. Prosecutors allege he didn’t provide proper nutrition and veterinary care for eight of the approximately 250 dogs under his care. The eight animals were seized from MacEachen in December.

MacEachen has denied the allegations. He says his dogs are well-cared for and receive regular check-ups and proper nutrition.

The trial is set for Oct. 8-10.

Prosecutors and MacEachen’s attorney said they expect plea agreement talks to continue.

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