Nearly 350 Dogs Rescued From Serious Neglect in Ohio
On February 22nd the Clark County, Ohio Humane Society conducted a raid on a property accused of animal neglect. 349 badly neglected dogs were found packed inside hog barns infested with rats, along with 76 dogs that had already died. The Humane Society worked in conjunction with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty for Animals (ASPCA) and the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) due to the size and seriousness of the case.
The seizure required three ASPCA and DART team trailers to remove all of the living dogs to a temporary shelter set up nearby. It took nearly 100 animal care specialists and team responders to move living dogs, assess injuries and count both the living and dead animals in the barns. The team included Humane Society staff and volunteers, ASPCA and IFAW teammates, Clark County Combined Health District officials and dog wardens from four other Ohio counties. Veterinarians are still at the temporary shelter working to bandage injuries, treat illnesses and euthanize dogs beyond help.
Dogs who have faced serious neglect often have difficulty adapted to life in an animal shelter or in a loving home, but the team is dedicated to rehabilitating as many of the dogs as possible. Due to the cramped, communal living quarters they grew used to in the hog barns, many of the dogs are stressed by the change to a separated kennel structure. However, the team hopes that the regular feedings and preliminary care they are receiving will help the dogs adjust.
The facility was supposed to be a rescue organization that took dogs at risk for euthanasia at other shelters, but the owner, Jeff Burgess of Piqua, Ohio, lacked the resources and space to care for over 400 dogs. More dogs were recently seized from a second property owned by the same man in Piqua, and after investigations are completed, he will likely face animal neglect charges.