A 46-year-old former dog breeder in western Tokyo has been arrested for alleged neglect of 10 dogs, police said Wednesday, noting that the number of animals he was taking care of at one point had reached over 150.
Takashi Ogawa, who lives in Hachioji, had been breeding and selling dogs such as Shiba Inu and Kai Ken, which are designated as national treasures. He is believed to have caused the 10 dogs to suffer through neglect between December and January in violation of the animal welfare law.
The Metropolitan Police Department believes he may have ended up with too many dogs to raise, becoming unable to offer adequate care.
Ogawa began breeding dogs in February 2010. He had about 170 animals at one point and at least 15 have died, according to the police.
About 100 dogs were found when the police searched Ogawa's house in January this year, with some of them apparently not getting enough water and food with their ribs visible. Some dogs were kept together in one small cage.
"There is a high demand for puppies, but once they grow up, they don't sell well. The dogs exceeded the number I could handle," Ogawa was quoted as saying.