Port Royal pet store owner denies abuse complaints

PORT ROYAL, S.C. (AP) - Beaufort County deputies have investigated six animal cruelty complaints against a Port Royal pet store owner in the past three years.

But owner Cindy Gahan says that she does not mistreat any animal and often takes in animals that have been abused.

The latest anonymous complaint at Cindy's Pet Paradise came last week, when deputies say someone reported a pig, goat, three rabbits and seven rats left in the sun without water. The animals were moved after an officer arrived.

Gahan has been convicted just once. In 2010, prosecutors made a deal where 22 counts of ill treatment of animals were reduced to one charge. Court records show Gahan paid a $500 fine.

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