updated 1/1/2009 1:03:23 AM ET 2009-01-01T06:03:23

A raid that resulted in the seizure of 189 English shepherds from a crowded kennel also turned up 10 frozen dog carcasses and a dead dog found beside the breeder's bed, authorities said Wednesday.

Deputy Yellowstone County Attorney Mark Murphy said a decision on whether to file charges against breeder Linda Kapsa will be made sometime next week.

Meanwhile, authorities were seeking tips into the fate of 50 pugs recently seen at Kapsa's Shady Lane Kennels but which are now missing.

The dogs seized Tuesday in Ballantine — many of them covered with fleas and feces and at least six that appeared gravely ill — were being held as evidence at the county fairgrounds in Billings.

"The law of the West is you don't abuse your animals," said County Commissioner Jim Reno. "Leaving little puppies out in below-zero weather, outside, without obvious food or shelter — that doesn't make it here."

Shady Lane Kennels sold dogs over the Internet and had been raided at least twice before, including in early December when 10 dogs were seized and 13 dead dogs were found.

Kapsa did not immediately return calls seeking comment.

Authorities speculated that disease or recent subzero temperatures could have killed the 11 dogs found dead Tuesday. Dog carcasses found in the latest raid included six on a manure pile, four in a kennel, and one in Kapsa's house, beside her bed, said John Fleming, animal control officer for the sheriff's office.

All the dead animals except the one inside were frozen solid and one appeared to have been half-eaten by other dogs. Temperatures in Ballantine, which is on the outskirts of Billings, dropped to 15 to 20 degrees below zero within the last several weeks.

"We don't think there were any beatings or anything like that," Fleming said. "They could be dead of hypothermia."

Also seized Tuesday were 27 chickens. Nine horses and 10 cockatiels found on Kapsa's property were left behind. At least some of those animals also appeared to be getting inadequate care, said Dave Pauli, Northern Rockies director for the Humane Society of the United States.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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