Guinea pigs, cats, chickens, rabbits, goats, donkeys and various birds, including an emu, were among 173 animals seized from squalid conditions in Denton County this weekend, according to the Humane Society of North Texas.The group has arranged housing for the animals until a custody hearing Nov. 19. If custody is given to the Humane Society, it can offer the animals for adoptions, according to a news release.The animals were taken from a single owner near Sanger where conditions were "horrific," said Shelly Meeks, the society's lead investigator.Last month, the Humane Society took control of dozens of dogs turned loose in two rural spots in Denton County. Officials speculated that the dogs were discarded by "puppy mill" breeding operations.Officials suspect the latest seizure near Sanger may also involve a breeder."Discovering many different species, especially in pairs like this, signals a suspected breeding situation," Meeks said."The conditions were absolutely deplorable, with feces and animal carcasses everywhere, as well as inadequate food and water."Officials are accepting advance applications from people who would like to adopt the animals."We will really be eager to help the donkeys find new owners as soon as possible, as we already have a large number of donkeys in our program right now," Meeks said. "We also need to move the chickens and rabbits into new homes as soon as possible."But it's not an instant process. "The entire sequence can sometimes take as long as 35 days from the point of seizure," Meeks said.Bill Miller, 817-390-7684Twitter: @Bill_MillerST
The Humane Society of North Texas is accepting advance applications from people interested in adopting animals seized over the weekend in Denton County. For information about how to apply or to make a donation to help pay for hay and feed for the animals, call 817-332-4768, ext. 113 or visit www.hsnt.org.