By Associated Press - Saturday, December 12, 2015

EXETER, R.I. (AP) - A Rhode Island couple is facing 17 counts of animal cruelty after police discovered sixteen dogs and a cat had been left alone for days while they allegedly went on vacation.

State police say Donald Perkins, 62, and Kathleen Perkins, 58, were arrested Friday and released pending a Dec. 16 arraignment.

Neighbors told police lights were left on in the home for days and the animals were making noise.

Police say the six papillon dogs and 10 golden retrievers were removed from the property after they were found kept in kennels with little water and no food.

They said Exeter animal control officials and a local animal rights group had previously received complaints about unsafe animal conditions on the property.

The couple, which runs Céile Kennels, did not respond to requests for comment.

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