Dogs Seized From Nightmarish Hoarding Situation

Update (January 19, 2023): The Cass County Circuit Court has awarded permanent custody of all the dogs—29 total—to the Humane Society of Missouri, where they’re being treated for frostbite, heartworms, and other serious health problems.

Update (December 23, 2022): Officials reportedly removed all but one dog from this property last night. The remaining one was unable to be caught, but we’re asking officials to initiate a trapping effort. Thank you to those who spoke out in behalf of these dogs! We’ll post another update when we know more.

Update (December 21, 2022): Catastrophic winter weather, including subzero temperatures and biting winds, are expected to blast the Cass County, Missouri, area for nearly the next week. Authorities have issued a statement saying that they’re aware of the conditions of the many dogs kept in the hoarding situation described below—but if they don’t act quickly, it may be too late. Please keep calling, e-mailing, and sending messages via Facebook! Time is of the essence, as these dogs’ lives are at risk.

Dogs have only debris for “shelter” in subzero temperatures. (Photo taken on December 22, 2022)

 

Original post:

Reportedly, officials in Cass County, Missouri, have been aware of an apparent hoarding situation on S. Roush Road in the town of Pleasant Hill for nearly two decades, but somehow conditions go relatively unchanged, as dozens of dogs are suffering at any given time. Photos apparently of the property as well as eyewitness accounts and media reports paint a grim picture of skeletal animals wandering a trash-strewn landscape like hungry ghosts or chained to rusty vehicles and debris preposterously meant to serve as “shelter” during Missouri’s notorious winters.

A nearly emaciated dog has a tether embedded in the neck. (Photo taken on November 15, 2022)

Local activists tell PETA caseworkers that the owner has repeatedly declined offers of free doghouses and other assistance, that multiple dogs have evidently frozen to death over the years, and that they are frustrated with officials who have reportedly done little to nothing, even though conditions at the property clearly appear to violate MO §578.005, which requires that wholesome food, clean water, and adequate shelter be provided. PETA caseworkers have pressed hard for action, but getting answers has been like pulling teeth, and the sheriff’s department will only say, “This is under investigation”—which is apparently a tired, empty mantra. Your voice is needed!

Images from 2021

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind