Forty-two animals, including the dogs shown here, were seized from a west Edmonton house in April. ((CBC))

An Edmonton woman has been charged with running a puppy mill that was discovered in the city's west end last spring, the Edmonton Humane Society announced Friday.

May Poon faces eight charges under Alberta's Animal Protection Act, including causing distress to animals. She is scheduled to appear in court Oct. 28. If convicted, Poon could receive a lifetime ban on having animals and could be fined a maximum $20,000 on each count.

Shawna Randolph of the Edmonton Humane Society said the organization took its time bringing the charges and is hoping for the maximum sentence.  "We were not going to rush it. We wanted to make sure everything was done very thoroughly," she said.

The operation was discovered April 1 in west Edmonton. The man who found the animals called the Humane Society. Investigators said they found 32 dogs and 10 cats, all housed in small cages that were soiled with their own feces and urine.

Many of the animals did not have water or adequate food in their cages, the Humane Society said.

Randolph said the animals needed treatment for medical and behavioural conditions. "A lot of them spent some time in foster care, and we're happy to say all of them were eventually adopted into homes."

Randolph also asked for the public's help to track down other puppy mills.

"We know that there must be other situations like this out there, and we can only respond if people give us concrete information and launch a formal complaint," she said. "You're not being a bad neighbour; you are helping to save animals' lives."