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Rescued dogs come to Lebanon shelters

Staff Reports • Updated Aug 2, 2017 at 8:00 AM

Animal Rescue Corps, a national nonprofit animal protection group, assisted Union City police and animal control late Saturday evening to rescue of 33 dogs found living in deplorable conditions at a property in Union City in Obion County, about three and a half hours west of Lebanon. 

Union City animal control officers seized all of the animals. 

ARC documented all of the animals on the property and took the dogs to an emergency shelter set up for the rescue, dubbed Operation Desperate Plea, in Lebanon. Each animal will receive a thorough veterinary exam, appropriate vaccinations and any necessary medical treatment. 

Animal control officers visited the property after the property owner inquired about getting help to feed her dogs. Upon inspection, they found violations of state and local safety and animal cruelty codes. Small dogs were visible loose inside the house with a floor piled thick with animal feces, strewn with debris, soaked in urine, and no food or water could be seen. 

The stench and dangerously high levels of ammonia gas from the animal waste were detectable from outside the home and neighboring properties. The property owner was cited with animal cruelty. Authorities reached out to ARC, which specializes in large-scale animal cruelty cases, and a team responded within hours of receiving the call for help.

“I’m so grateful we were in a position to respond to this request; we didn’t get here a moment too soon,” said ARC director of animal welfare Kim Rezac. “These animals were on death’s door when we arrived, but they’re safe now, and we’re going to do everything possible to help them recover.”

The dogs inside the house, mostly Chihuahuas, Chihuahua mixes and Shih Tzus, were found without food or water loose inside the feces-strewn home. Adult dogs and a newborn puppy exhibited signs of severe, chronic neglect, including broken bones, emaciation, mange, dehydration, intestinal worms, external parasites, runny eyes and alopecia. 

Found outside on the property were several large chained dogs, including labradors and hounds. None of the animals had food or water.

“The conditions here are so bad, we knew we had to do something immediately,” said Amanda Hayslett with the Union City Department of Animal Control, “We called ARC and cited the property owner.”

All of the animals were surrendered to Animal Rescue Corps. ARC will provide daily care until they can be transferred to shelter and rescue organizations that will ultimately adopt them into homes. For people who wish to foster or adopt, ARC will publish its list of shelter and rescue placement partners on its Facebook page once the dogs are transferred to the groups.

Animal Rescue Corps performed Operation Desperate Plea in conjunction with the Union City Police Department and animal control.

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