More than 100 dogs and cats are recovering after being rescued from what Humane Society of Missouri officials called filthy, unsafe living conditions on a property in Bates County, Mo.
The agency’s Animal Cruelty Task Force rescued 84 dogs and 17 cats from the property on Wednesday. The majority of the animals were living inside a waste-filled, trash-strewn, dilapidated small house, said Debbie Hill, the Humane Society’s vice president of operations.
“These animals were forced to live in truly squalid conditions, the worst I have encountered in more than 40 years of rescuing animals from abuse and neglect,” Hill wrote in a blog post on the agency’s website.
Hill said animals were living in crates with layers of feces- and urine-saturated newspaper. Some crates were stacked on top of each other and others were outdoors, filled with animal waste.
Some single-dog crates contained more than one dog and no running water was found on the property.
The dogs, Hill said, are small, medium and large breeds, ranging in age from nursing puppies to mature, adult dogs; the cats are all adults of mixed breeds.
Kathy Warnick, president of the Humane Society of Missouri, said a citizen contacted the Humane Society and the Bates County Sheriff’s Office about the animals’ living conditions.
About 50 dogs were rescued from the same property in 2011, Warnick wrote in the same blog post.
“As is typical in hoarding situations, persons allowed to continue to own animals often continue to collect them,” she wrote.
The dogs were transported to Humane Society’s headquarters in St. Louis where they will be examined by veterinarians. They will be made available for adoption as soon as possible, Warnick said.
A disposition hearing to determine permanent custody of the animals will be held Jan. 2 at the Bates County Courthouse in Butler.
For more information about the animals or to donate, visit the Humane Society of Missouri’s website at www.hsmo.org.