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California couple accused of starving, torturing 13 siblings had "healthy" dogs

"Healthy" dogs in "house of horrors"

PERRIS, Calif. – The California parents accused of starving and torturing their 13 children had dogs in their home that appeared to be well cared for, officials say.

According to a statement from the City of Perris, two Maltese-mix dogs found at the home of David and Louise Turpin appear "healthy" and are available for adoption. They are also described as "friendly" and "leash-trained."

City of Perris spokesman Joe Vargo told Inside Edition the dogs appeared "well-fed." 

The dogs were seized by authorities who raided the home after a 17-year-old girl escaped and alerted police to the situation inside.

Shocking details revealed about California "house of horrors"

Authorities have said that the siblings, who range in age from 2 to 29, were tied with ropes and chains as punishment and were so severely malnourished that they appeared to be much younger than their ages.  A 29-year-old woman weighs 82 pounds, and a 12-year-old weighs as much as an average 7-year-old, a prosecutor said.

"As a prosecutor, there are cases that stick with you, that will haunt you," District Attorney Mike Hestrin said. "Sometimes in this business, we're faced with looking at human depravity -- and that's what we're looking at here."

The couple would also frequently beat and strangle the siblings as punishment, he said, and they apparently bought food for themselves and then let the siblings look at it but not eat it.

"House of horrors" parents charged for torture against their 13 children

"They would buy food, including pies, apple pies, pumpkin pies, leave it on the counter, let the children look at it but not eat the food," Hestrin said.

David Turpin, 56, and Louise Turpin, 49, pleaded not guilty Thursday to multiple counts of torture, child abuse, dependent adult abuse and false imprisonment. David Turpin also pleaded not guilty to performing a lewd act on a child under age 14.

They were jailed on $12 million bail each.