On February 25, the Humane Society of the United States assisted the Dixie County Sheriff’s Office in rescuing more than 140 dogs in a large-scale alleged severe neglect situation on a residential property in Dixie County, Florida. This week, the animals will begin to be transported to seek placement through the Humane Society of the United States’ Shelter and Rescue Partners.

Partners accepting animals from the case include SPCA Tampa Bay, Humane Society of Tampa Bay, Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando, Nassau Humane Society, Leon County Humane Society, Humane Society of Sarasota County, Animal Welfare League of Charlotte County and Humane Society Naples.

At the time of the rescue, the dogs appeared to suffer from a lack of basic care and were living in filthy, poor conditions typically seen in severe neglect situations. The animals were primarily found living outside, contained in hutches which were caked in feces and leaking in the rain, some with no apparent access to food and water. The majority of the dogs were suffering from skin conditions characterized by missing fur, sores and itchy skin. 

The animals began their road to recovery in a temporary shelter at an undisclosed location, with care provided by responders from the Humane Society of the United States and RedRover, as well as a team of veterinarians.

“These dogs have already come a long way from the conditions we found them in a couple weeks ago,” said Laura Koivula, deputy manager of animal crimes for the Humane Society of the United States. “Each day, they’ve grown stronger and we are inspired by their resiliency. We are grateful to our partners for opening their doors to these dogs as they take the next step on their journey and begin to seek homes.”

All but three of the dogs rescued from the property were surrendered to the Humane Society of the United States. The three who were not surrendered will continue to be expertly cared for as the court process decides their eventual custody.

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