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This poodle survived a puppy mill. Now she stars in a national campaign.

B.B., a purebred miniature poodle, was among nearly 130 animals rescued from a Cabarrus County puppy mill in September. She was selected to be the face of a day-long online fund-raising campaign on Monday to stop America’s puppy mills.
B.B., a purebred miniature poodle, was among nearly 130 animals rescued from a Cabarrus County puppy mill in September. She was selected to be the face of a day-long online fund-raising campaign on Monday to stop America’s puppy mills. Humane Society of the United States

A purebred miniature poodle that was among nearly 130 animals rescued from a Cabarrus County puppy mill in September was selected to be the face of a day-long online fund-raising campaign on Monday to stop America’s puppy mills.

B.B. stars in the annual Day of Giving campaign of the Humane Society of the United States.

Every dollar raised will be used to help dogs like B.B. and stop commercial dog-breeding facilities that cause animals a lifetime of suffering and loneliness, the Humane Society said.

B.B. was found after an anonymous tip led deputies to investigate a property where she and 104 other dogs, 20 cats and three goats were living in what county officials described as “unsafe and unsanitary conditions.” Some of the animals needed urgent medical care, authorities said.

Brenda Tortoreo of Kannapolis rescued B.B., who was shaking in fright, she said. “She only had three teeth,” Tortoreo told the Observer. “They had to pull out the rest because they were so rotten.”

B.B. was a mere 3 1/2 pounds and has since filled out to 10 pounds, she said. B.B. also now runs around with Tortoreo’s two previous rescues – Skittles, a female Yorkie mix, and Treeko, a male Maltese.

But B.B. stops in fright when Tortoreo tries to walk her outside with a harness and a leash. She appears to have never been exposed to sunlight in her seven to 10 years of life, Tortoreo said.

Post-rescue adjustment for such dogs can at times be hard, and owners need to be patient, said Tortoreo, 62, who retired after 27 years at Cabarrus Animal Hospital in Concord, most recently as a receptionist. But thanks to the Humane Society of the United States, she said, they’ve been given the second chance all such animals deserve.

Joe Marusak: 704-358-5067, @jmarusak

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