A Montgomery County pet store owner has been charged with animal cruelty after humane officers found puppies and small rodents suffering from heat stress in an un- airconditioned flea market.

Kevin Zimmers, of Boyertown, owner of Zimmers Pets, was charged with two counts of animal cruelty after officers with the Montgomery County SPCA and state dog wardens found five overheated puppies in a glass case and a number of hamsters and rats in hot conditions at Zern's Flea Market in Gilbertsville.

Zimmers was ordered to take the puppies and the small mammals to a veterinarian. Montgomery County SPCA humane police officer Christopher Langiotti said Zimmers also did not provide the puppies, Border Collies and pit bulls, with clean water.

No court date has been scheduled.

Zimmers is licensed to operate a stand at the flea market - which is open on Fridays and Saturdays - and at a second retail outlet in Boyertown, Berks County.

The kennel received a clean report during an inspection this year, but it took place on a Tuesday when the flea market was not open and no dogs were present. Sue West, director of the Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement, said that future inspections will take place when the store is open.