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Inspiring community action in Inverness: Uniting against a 'disgusting puppy farm' that trashed owner's Airbnb cottage

By Annabelle Gauntlett

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WARNING: Explicit and sensitive content.

Nine of the puppies held in a small cage.
Nine of the puppies held in a small cage.

An Inverness cleaning company have offered a couple a free deep clean after they were 'devastated' when they discovered the woman they rented their cottage out to on Airbnb 'trashed their home and used it as a puppy farm' with 15 or more puppies held captive in a cage at one time.

Tracey Parsons and her partner Dave Bradley have had their cottage in Scaniport listed on Airbnb for five years with no previous issue before, but are now 'terrified' of letting it out again after they returned to 'neglected pups and faeces smeared across their walls'.

After seeing the couple's story online, cleaning company Merry Maids felt obliged to help their local community by offering a free deep clean service to save them the expense and hassle of doing it themselves.

Merry Maids' Tom Page said: "Merry Maids are so entrenched in the community as it is really important to us, so when we saw this story we just wanted to help.

"We really feel that we want to make as much of an impact as we can in our communities, so seeing that story with the devastation that was caused by the whole process, we just wanted to help.

"It was obviously quite emotional to see and it made us want to reach out and help in any way we could.

"On a personal level, I thought it was just awful. It was horrific and shocking to see.

"It really did just make me want to try and help them in any way.

"We obviously see a lot of properties in a bad way, but this story was just so shocking."

The puppies that had been claimed to have been locked in the car for over an hour in the freezing cold.
The puppies that had been claimed to have been locked in the car for over an hour in the freezing cold.

Tracey and Dave have been 'overwhelmed' by the support of their local community as they said: "We have been utterly overwhelmed by everyone's offers to help and to be contacted by Merry Maids was just unbelievable.

"It just shows that at times like this the community is there for us.

"You just can't beat Highland generosity."

The police attended the scene where the alleged 'puppy farm' was on Tuesday.

A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “We received a report of concern about dogs in the Torbreck area, near Inverness, at around 12.30pm on Tuesday.

“Officers attended along with a partner agency and carried out enquiries. No criminality was established and no further police action was taken.”

The Scottish SPCA were also called to the scene that day.

Scottish SPCA inspector Andy Brown said: “We were called out to a cottage in Scaniport, Inverness on Tuesday after receiving reports of puppies being left in a vehicle for days.

“When we attended there were no dogs in the vehicle. A number of puppies were being kept in the property, along with their mum, and we had these animals checked over by a vet. The vet had no concerns over their health. We are continuing to work with the owner of these animals to ensure they are being appropriately cared for.

“If anybody has any future concerns over these dogs or any other animal, they can contact our confidential animal helpline on 03000 999 999.”

An Airbnb spokesperson said: “We were deeply saddened to hear about this and our specialist team is in touch with the host to provide support. We stand ready to assist both the police and Scottish SPCA with any investigation. Our dedicated law enforcement portal allows police forces to contact us with a suspected issue, while residents can use our Neighbourhood Support Line to report urgent concerns."

It is understood that the guest has been suspended from the Airbnb platform in line with our policies.

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