|Barked: Mon Aug 25, '08 8:34am PST |
|I had a foster gal from this puppymill and she was sweet as can be just unused to people. So please cross post this where ever you can! We all need to join together and save these doxies!
PARKERSBURG - Humane Society officials and volunteers are working around the clock in what officials say could be the largest animal-rescue operation in West Virginia history - the removal of around 1,000 purebred dachshund dogs a Parkersburg breeder surrendered to authorities Saturday.
The dogs appeared to be well-nourished and officials say there were no signs that the dogs had been abused, but the sheer number of dogs at the Whispering Oaks Kennel was more than any human being could possibly care for.
"It's simply unimaginable," said Jordan Crump, Humane Society of the United States public information officer. "No one can take care of a thousand dogs."
Wood County Prosecutor Ginny Conley, as well as other officials, would not give the name of the owner or the location of the kennel. However, the Whispering Oaks Kennel Web site lists the owner as Sharon Roberts, but does not list the kennel's location.
A Wood County 911 dispatcher said the call was dispatched to Whispering Oaks Lane, but an exact location was unavailable. Attempts to contact the owner Saturday were unsuccessful.
The Humane Society of Parkersburg devoted all its resources and the Humane Society of the United States was also mobilized to deal with the dogs, which are being taken to a warehouse near the animal shelter and housed in cages.
Local veterinarian volunteers are checking each dog. Carrie Roe, HSOP board president, said Saturday one dog was found to have a fractured pelvis and was in surgery Saturday evening.
Scotlund Haisley, senior director of emergency services for the HSUS, said it will probably take two days to remove all the dogs from the kennel.
Roe said it will be at least a week before any of the animals can be adopted. First, each of the thousand dogs must be seen by a veterinarian, processed and checked for temperament. But when they are available for adoption, the dogs will likely live a much better life than they would have otherwise, she said.
"They have been in the kennel their entire lives. Some have never been touched, but these dogs are very resilient. Most will make good family pets. They will have a chance to be the type of dogs they couldn't have been before. These are very adoptable dogs - the fact they are all purebred is certainly going to help," she said.
Many of the dogs will be taken to out-of-state adoption centers as officials say a thousand dogs is far too many to be housed and adopted locally.
Conley said the HSOP, the West Virginia Division of Environmental Protection and the Wood County Sheriff's Department have been working together for weeks on an investigation of possible dog-related pollution. She said a search warrant on the kennel was executed by the deputies and the DEP around 8:30 a.m. Saturday. While the owner has not been cited for any animal neglect-related charges, the pollution investigation is ongoing, she said.
Conley said the owner agreed to never operate a dog-breeding business again. According to the Web site, Whispering Oaks, an Internet-based business, had been breeding dachshunds since 1961.
Many of the rescued dogs were dachshunds, but there were other small breeds as well.
"The owner, once confronted, was very cooperative and surrendered all of the dogs," Conley said. "Over the last six months, the owner realized the need for downsizing. We showed up and had the resources to do that. We solved a problem today," she said.
Haisley said the Humane Society needs blankets and towels for the dogs, but most of all monetary donations. He said the rescue operation could easily cost $100,000.
To donate or volunteer to help with the dog rescue, call the Humane Society of Parkersburg at (304) 422-5541 or www.hsop.org.
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