LATEST: Socialite Paris Hilton has defended herself against criticism of her extensive pet collection, insisting she only owns 17 dogs because they keep breeding. The Simple Life star is currently at the centre of a new Los Angeles Department of Animal Services investigation after recently boasting about her pooches on Ellen DeGeneres' TV chatshow. But Hilton claims her brood keeps growing because she doesn't want to separate newborn pups from their parents. She says, "They keep having babies and I feel bad to give them away because I feel like, if I had a baby and someone gave it away it would be mean."