Last month, a situation in Custer County brought together several agencies, including the Fire Department, Sheriff’s Office, Social Services, Land Use, the Health Department, the Dumb Friends League and the Colorado Humane Society & S.P.C.A., Inc. (CHS), to help with the rescue of animals living in deplorable conditions.
What awaited the seven agencies was unimaginable. On a single piece of property without running water or a septic system, sat two campers—one housed a family of four and the other was home to 20 rats—and two cars that accommodated four dogs. Three adult cats and one puppy (the only one to survive from a litter of eight) rounded out the menagerie at the scene.
The animal abuse and neglect were apparent and kept the agencies busy as they investigated the decrepit conditions. The dogs were thin and in varying health conditions, including one husky having pannus, which is a disease affecting a dog’s cornea and impairs vision. It was also discovered that the rats were being raised and used as a food source.
The owners were arrested and surrendered the animals to CHS. The Dumb Friends League assisted in the removal and transportation of all the animals back to its shelter. In total, the League received four dogs, one puppy, three cats and three rats.
“The rescue was very organized, and it went smoothly,” said Bobbi Priestly, CHS field services manager.
Ten of the rescued animals were adopted and are now living in loving homes. One dog was humanely euthanized.
To learn more about CHS and the work the organization does, visit coloradohumane.org.
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