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Thursday, Apr. 17, 2014

Conditions at dog rescue mobile home reported to be improving

Posted Friday, September 17, 2010, at 11:14 AM

Do you remember the eastern Greene County dog rescue in late July where officials removed more than 70 dogs from a mobile home occupied by two women?

Health conditions for human habitation in the Lawrence Hollow area residence was described as questionable at best by officials.

The situation leading up to officials with the Greene County Health Department and the Monroe County Humane Association stepping in and taking action to rescue the variety of dogs shows there was probably plenty of fault to be spread around among the home residents as well as Humane Society officials from Greene and Monroe counties.

The good intentions of the residents, who really do care for the pets under their roof, simply got out of hand and needed cleaned up.

No formal charges were filed in the case, but the residence remains under the watchful eyes of local officials.

Greene County Health Department Environmental Health Specialist Andera Alltop said at the time of the rescue there were obvious health concerns.

"It was impossible to keep it sanitary with the amount of space and the number of animals," she told me for an earlier story.

The homeowners were allowed to keep nine dogs, Alltop noted.

According to officials, some of the animals were infested with fleas and intestinal parasites. The mobile home floor had been stripped down to the plywood flooring and newspapers were placed on the floor. The walls had also been stripped and chain fences erected as pens for the dogs.

The two women, described by some officials involved in the rescue as mission hoarders, were given 21 days to clean up the mobile home and be ready for a re-inspection to make sure it is OK for human habitation

So is the situation any better today than it was on that warm day in July?

Alltop and Marilyn Crays, the county's public health nurse, visited the site again Aug. 20 for a follow-up inspection.

"At that time we did see a vast improvement in the living conditions. The occupants are working very hard to clean up the property. Upon this follow up visit we observed that much of the home had been cleaned and disinfected," Alltop reported to me earlier this week.

"We are still concerned about the strong odor of urine and feces that still exists in the home that could in part be due to the inability to completely disinfect the wood particle board floors that had been saturated with dog urine in the past. Also, while much of the trash outside had been properly disposed of, there still remain two small piles."

Alltop said a re-inspection will be made in 60 days to determine that the remaining public health issues have been addressed.

"They are still in possession of the nine dogs they were allowed to keep and they had just been returned by Monroe County Humane Association who had taken them a few days earlier to get them caught up on their shots and have them spayed and neutered," Alltop stated.

When asked if the local health department has had any other similar complaints around the county, Alltop replied, "We do not have any similar complaints in the county. We do not typically get involved in animal control issues, but we were able to work closely with Monroe County Humane Association on this particular case to assure that the dogs would be rescued and cared for. The health department's role in this situation was one of public health concern as well as the unsanitary living conditions of the dwelling and the dwelling's lot."

So, it looks like conditions are improving some in this particular case.

This situation begs for some answers.

How did the conditions get to such an extreme before health officials were called in?

What was the role or responsibility of the Greene County Humane Society? I do know that a relative of one of the woman living in the home told me the county humane society had been contacted to assist when a large number of stray dogs started showing up at the home.

For whatever reason, no help was forthcoming and the number of dogs just kept multiplying.

Some of the dogs were even conveniently dropped off because "word" got around that these two ladies had a "soft spot" and love for animals and wouldn't turn away any of them.

This is a sad case that bears a close watch by officials in future weeks and months.

Nick is the assistant editor for the Greene County Daily World. He can be reached by telephone at 847-4487 or 1-800-947-4487; by e-mail at schneider.nick@gmail.com or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/page... .

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as you have read gchs is not anything, but maybe horders themselves! they need shut down.

-- Posted by elynn66 on Thu, Sep 23, 2010, at 5:43 PM

I have a question not about these ladies, but on animal control in the city of Linton...is there any? I mean I see the city truck all over the place driving around with the cage in the back, I see it in parking lots and yet, I never saw it at an abandoned house where there were at least 8 cats living, breeding, inbreeding in a fenced yard. Hmm, I know several people who called more than once. These cats were sickly and gross, with neighborhood kids wanting to catch the kittens.

At what point does animal control respond to a call? Apparently 70 dogs got someones attention in the case in this article. I just get frustrated!! I have taken in pups (to the GCHS) that had been dumped out when I lived in the country and they acted like I was a criminal! Geez they weren't mine, so should I have just let them roam?

-- Posted by feelinyounglookinold on Thu, Sep 23, 2010, at 10:06 AM

I believe that the blame for these situations is constantly being misplaced. It is not the people who try to save the world one animal at a time and become overwhelmed. Nor is it the shelters, animal care organizations, etc. It IS the irresponsible owners and breeders who do not care for their animals properly.

Why are there so many strays, abandoned animals, chained animals and accidental/unwanted litters of puppies and kittens? It is not because of the shelters etc. It IS due to owner neglect and indifference.

If people wish to make a difference in their county there are plenty of ways to do that! Help to educate the public about responsible pet ownership by sharing spay/neuter info and it's importance. Volunteer or help support the rescue organization of your choice that will be most helpful to your community.

At the current rate of reproduction of pets there will never be enough homes for all of them. People need to have their pets spayed and neutered, stop buying pets and visit a rescue organization or shelter FIRST for a new pet. Realize that a pet is a lifetime commitment...to them! People have got to take responsibility for their own pets and not dump them off on someone else! If for no other reason than the animals deserve better!

Do we really need laws or government to tell us to do the right thing!

-- Posted by DL7 on Sat, Sep 18, 2010, at 8:45 PM

If we take the time to define animal shelter(s),

it becomes self-evident what type of shelter Greene County has, and where the shelter's responsibilities begin & end.


The GC Humane Society is an "animal shelter", NOT an "animal control agency".

The GCHS does not make laws/ordinances or enforce laws/ordinances.

The GCHS does not have the authority to tell anyone how many dogs they can own.

The GCHS does not govern, enforce or perform inspections related to public health and safety issues.

If the Health Department or Law Enforcement are involved in a case of human beings, animals and gross filth; they may certainly call the GCHS, identify the problem, and ask what space is available.

Bare in mind, the GCHS shelter does not have a special interest group such as the MCHA.

The MCHA is a group of dedicated volunteers that; advocate, educate, lobby and raise funds on behalf of animals in their community & elsewhere.

The MCHA has a long history, and they have evolved into the proactive, successful group they are today.


Preparations for a 70+ animal raid or seizure must be made & practiced well in advance.

It takes more than 3 sets of hands to accomplish such a task.


Greene County is not the only county to be assisted by the MCHA.


Where does this need to shame and blame the only organizations who do anything on behalf of animals come from?

-- Posted by gchs on Fri, Sep 17, 2010, at 8:55 PM

Greene County as a whole needs to look at their animal situation. There are very few ordinances to stop this type of situation and no one to enforce it. The local shelter is a non-profit with no animal control powers. The current shelter isn't up to par as a shelter let alone being able to handle a hoarding case.

Training, public outcry to put local ordinances need into effect, and official animal control officers need to be put in place. The local humane society needs to work on professionalizing or the county needs to look to other means to clean up the messes in Greene County.

The MCHA is certainly not to blame. They did us a favor and cleaned this up without submitting a bill and they didn't have to. The dogs are in a better place, the individuals in question are working on resolving the issue, only because someone called the MCHA. And you want to say they are to blame? Misguided and misinformed.

-- Posted by smsmith on Fri, Sep 17, 2010, at 1:36 PM

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