Convicted Shelter Owner Faces 5 Years for Dog Abuse

Diane Eldrup operated animal shelter where 30 dogs were discovered dead

By Al Romero
|  Friday, Sep 9, 2011  |  Updated 9:56 AM CDT
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Diane Eldrup

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A Deer Park woman who once operated a northwest suburban animal shelter was convicted Thursday on charges of felony animal torture and aggravated cruelty to animals.

Diane Eldrup, 48, operated the former Muddy Paws Dog Rescue in the town of Kildeer. When police were called to the shelter last December, they discovered 30 dogs and other animals that apparently had starved to death, according to the Daily Herald

During the trial Eldrup admitted that as far back as 2010, she continued to accept sickly dogs from other overcrowded shelters but that eventually she became overwhelmed by financial and marital problems. 

Even as animals began to die around her, she said she didn't connect with what was going on around her.

One woman left the court room vomiting during testimony of witnesses who said they saw the dead dogs.

Eldrup will be sentenced next month. She could get as much as five years in prison.

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