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More Than 200 Animals Rescued from Alleged Cruelty in Alabama


updated March 1, 2011 

The Humane Society of the United States assisted the Houston County Sheriff’s Department in the rescue of 197 dogs and 31 cats who were found living in deplorable conditions in Gordon, Ala. The animals were removed from Dirty Sally’s Pet Pals, a non-profit organization that claims to offer animals for adoption. The organization has relinquished ownership of all of the animals to the Houston County Sheriff’s Department.

This rescue is the first that The HSUS has conducted using funds from the Pepsi Refresh Project. The HSUS recently won $250,000 dollars in the Pepsi Challenge by getting the most votes for its proposal to rescue animals from cruelty and neglect.

“Whether Dirty Sally’s started with good intentions, it is now clear that the organization is unable to properly care for this number of animals, and we want to make sure they get the care they need,” said Mindy Gilbert, Alabama state director for The HSUS. “We are grateful to all of the groups that came together to assist in this rescue and help give these animals a second chance at healthy, happy lives.”

When responders arrived on the scene they found breeds ranging from hound mixes to Labrador retriever mixes housed throughout the property. A veterinarian on the scene determined that many of the dogs suffered from medical ailments such as skin infections, untreated wounds and other serious ailments. The cats were living in a dirty pen with little safety from the elements. The dogs were being housed in feces-ridden outdoor pens, inside several dilapidated trailers and chained to trees throughout the property.

This rescue was set into motion by the Houston County Sheriff’s Department, which received tips about allegedly cruel conditions and neglected animals in need of veterinary care and reached out to The HSUS for assistance with animal handling, transportation, sheltering and much-needed supplies. The HSUS then called in United Animal Nations to provide animal care and sheltering support. PetSmart Charities® donated food and other supplies to the rescue efforts. Further assistance was provided by Lee County Humane Society, Alabama Animal Control Association, Montgomery Humane Society, Greater Birmingham Humane Society and Chilton County Humane Society.

All of the animals are being safely removed and transported to an emergency shelter where they will be examined by a team of veterinarians and receive any necessary immediate medical care. The HSUS and UAN will provide the daily care of the animals until they are placed with rescue groups.

If you are a rescue group in the area that would like to join our Emergency Services Placement Partner Program and potentially take in some of these rescued animals please fill out the application here.

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