Sec­ond chance at life for seized pups brought to Charles County

Last Chance An­i­mal Res­cue helps save 50 of 300 seized Pomera­ni­ans

Maryland Independent - - Community Forum - By TIF­FANY WAT­SON twat­son@somd­news.com Twit­ter: Tif­fIndyNews

A few of the Pomera­nian dogs seized from a home in Wi­comico County on April 6 were given a sec­ond chance at life last Thurs­day by an an­i­mal res­cue shel­ter in Charles County.

Wi­comico County An­i­mal Con­trol said in a press re­lease that it found 200 dogs in­side a barn in Sal­is­bury ear­lier this month, while an­other 100 were found in­side a house on the same prop­erty dur­ing a rou­tine ken­nel check. The Hu­mane So­ci­ety of Wi­comico County re­moved mostly Pomera­ni­ans from the prop­erty with the ma­jor­ity of the dogs not be­ing in good con­di­tion. Au­thor­i­ties have not re­leased the iden­ti­ties of the dog own­ers and no charges have been filed.

Last Chance An­i­mal Res­cue in Wal­dorf strate­gi­cally brought 50 of the 300 dogs to their res­cue shel­ter in Wal­dorf on April 14 af­ter be­ing con­tacted by the Hu­mane So­ci­ety of Wi­comico County to help take in some of the dogs who had been in­volved in the hoard­ing and cru­elty seizure.

“Had the dogs been at the home for an­other cou­ple of weeks there would have been a few dead ones,” said Cindy Sharp­ley, Last Chance An­i­mal Res­cue di­rec­tor.

Sharp­ley, who is orig­i­nally from Sal­is­bury, said Last Chance An­i­mal Res­cue de­vel­oped a great re­la­tion­ship with Hu­mane So­ci­ety of Wi­comico County af­ter help­ing them res­cue an­i­mals on sev­eral oc­ca­sions in past years.

“I was told that the Wi­comico County Hu­mane So­ci­ety in­ves­ti­gated a house with 100 dogs and found 200 dogs in a chicken coop or barn. I told them we can help take 100 dogs into our care,” Sharp­ley said.

Sharp­ley went to go pick up 50 of the seized dogs and when she brought the dogs back at 7:30 p.m. that Thurs­day evening, the an­i­mal res­cue staff, lo­cal vol­un­teers and groomers sprung into ac­tion to help set up a vac­ci­na­tion sta­tion, mi­crochip sta­tion, a heart worm test sta­tion and three groom­ing sta­tions for the in­com­ing pup­pies. By mid­night, all of the dogs were vac­ci­nated, groomed, given flea and tick pre­ven­tion meds, mi­crochipped, heart­worm tested, de­wormed, and fed.

“The dogs have some med­i­cal is­sues but are over­all rel­a­tively healthy. None had been vac­ci­nated and there were no med­i­cal records, none were spayed and neutered, and there’s a lot of den­tal dis­ease. We tended to the im­me­di­ate needs right away such as the runny eyes, up­per res­pi­ra­tory [is­sues], shav­ing them be­cause you can see how badly their fur was mat­ted with dog and chicken fe­ces. The skin of the dogs was in­flamed un­der­neath and there were also le­sions on their paws from walk­ing around on the fe­ces for so long so we gave them man­i­cures and pedi­cures,” Sharp­ley said.

Dr. Erin Martinez, Last Chance An­i­mal Res­cue vet­eri­nar­ian, said that the dogs came in with a va­ri­ety of med­i­cal con­di­tions such as cataract in­juries or pre­vi­ous in­juries to their eyes, knee caps not stay­ing in place, heart mur­murs, and a few non-sur­gi­cal is­sues as well.

“I doubt they were get­ting very much care where they were found. I can tell they haven’t seen a vet be­fore and that they weren’t cleaned reg­u­larly. Re­mark­ably they have all been very well be­haved. A lot of times we get snarling from res­cued an­i­mals or we can’t get them out of the cage be­cause the an­i­mals may have never had hu­man con­tact. Th­ese dogs are on the other end of the spec­trum and I don’t think they’ve had much hu­man con­tact but it hasn’t turned them to fear hu­mans at this point. They’re very sweet,” Martinez said.

Martinez said that all of the dogs re­ceived a doc­tor’s exam on their sec­ond day of be­ing at the res­cue shel­ter in or­der to de­ter­mine pre­ferred treat­ment for each dog.

Brenda Pate, a vol­un­teer at Last Chance, helped groom the dogs on Thurs­day evening and through­out the week­end.

“I wasn’t sure what we were go­ing to get when the van ar­rived but none of them tried to bite us. You can tell they were just ner­vous. Some of the dogs just fell over into our arms like a baby or like they were re­lieved to be here. The dogs prob­a­bly had a good night’s sleep prob­a­bly for the first time in a while,” Pate said.

Pate has adopted from Last Chance An­i­mal Res­cue Shel­ter many times be­fore and said although she left the shel­ter each night with sore arms, it was to­tally worth giv­ing those dogs the at­ten­tion they des­per­ately needed.

“I like to make them look pretty so our mis­sion was to get the hair off and get them com­fort­able so that we can bathe them. We tried to save as much hair as we could but when it’s that bad, there was no choice but to shave them,” Pate said.

Cur­rently there are 22 dogs left to be sent into fos­ter homes for two weeks but all 50 of the dogs will be brought back to Last Chance for more med­i­cal treat­ment and will be spayed and neutered be­fore they are adopted into for­ever homes.

“It was beau­ti­ful and in­spir­ing see­ing the com­mu­nity come to­gether to help th­ese dogs. This wasn’t a Charles County prob­lem but peo­ple from the tri-county re­gion came from all over to help. We are happy to re­port that the pups are start­ing to feel bet­ter al­ready and are start­ing to play and wag their tails,” Sharp­ley said.

Those who wish to help in fos­ter­ing a dog in need can email fos­ter@lastchancean­i­mal­res­cue.org.

STAFF PHOTO BY TIF­FANY WAT­SON

Last Thurs­day, the Last Chance An­i­mal Res­cue Vol­un­teer Co­or­di­na­tor and Vet­eri­nar­ian Tech­ni­cian Lau­rie Jenk­ins helped soak the paws of res­cued Pomera­nian dogs in a so­lu­tion to help heal the le­sions that de­vel­oped dur­ing their hoard­ing con­di­tions at a Wi­comico County res­i­dence.

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