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Pet Store Owners Plead Innocent To Reno Animal Mistreatment

RENO, Nev. (AP) — The owners of two pet stores in Reno and Sparks have pleaded not guilty to several charges of mistreating animals.

Lawyers for Michael Schneider and Leilani Tau-Schneider also filed a motion Wednesday seeking to dismiss the charges or reduce them from felonies to misdemeanors.


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Both are accused of practicing veterinary medicine without a license. Tau-Schneider also faces one count of torturing and/or killing an animal.

The two own Puppies Plus on South Virginia Street in Reno and Puppy Love off Sparks Boulevard in Sparks.


Attorney Richard Cornell told the Reno Gazette-Journal they deny that many of the alleged incidents ever occurred.


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Tau-Schneider maintains the torture charge is based on hearsay from a former employee that cannot be submitted in court.


Washoe County District Attorney spokeswoman Michelle Bays says the state remains confident in its evidence against the two.