More than 70 beagles were removed from a rural Pennsylvania home over the weekend, rescued from what authorities say were “deplorable conditions.”
The Associated Press reported that, according to Lehigh County Humane Society police officer Barbara Morgan, the organization got a call Saturday night from police, who had received noise complaints.
Animal welfare workers responded to a home in Allentown, Pennsylvania, where a woman had been breeding dogs without a license before she died last month, The AP reported.
“At first, he told us there were 25,” Lehigh County Humane Society fundraising and events coordinator Kalyn Kratzer told People. “Then, once we actually were able to make entry and evaluate the situation, we were able to come out with 71 animals.”
Officials initially found 73 beagles, but two were already dead by the time they got to the house.
“(Dogs were) ranging from completely emaciated to relatively healthy looking,” Kratzer said. “We just were completely unprepared for what we found.”
The dogs, all believed to be inbred, range in age from seniors to young puppies. None are housebroken or vaccinated. They have varying health issues, including birth defects, parasites and untreated injuries, Kratzer said.
“The conditions were really, really unlivable for these animals and some of them were so inhumanely underweight that we immediately seized them,” she said.
Shelter manager Teisha Jones told The Morning Call most of the dogs have scars from nipping each other and fighting to get to food.
The dogs were fed, watered, groomed, vaccinated and given a thorough checkup. They will be spayed and neutered as well.
Mary Shafer, the executive director of the humane society, said the owner of the house was left with the animals when his companion died. She operated as a beagle rescue without a license. The man who owned the home will likely face charges, Shafer said.
The shelter is taking donations to help with animal care. Donations can be made at the Lehigh County Humane Society website.
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