CAMPBELLSBURG, KY (WAVE) - Hundreds of animals covered in mud, feces, and urine were rescued from a home in Henry County. Officials say it's a case of animal hoarding and a puppy mill and the people responsible for the animals horrendous conditions are on the run.
"I've been doing this for 12 years one of the worst cases I've seen," said Dan Flinkfelt, director of Henry and Trimble County Animal Services.
Over 115 dogs, 20 cats, crate after crate full of rabbits and guinea pigs, geese, a hybrid wolf, horses, birds, a screech owl, hermit crabs, and other animals were all rescued from a home on Allyson Lane in Campbellsburg.
Flinkfelt said they received an anonymous tip of animal hoarding and a puppy mill at the Allyson Lane home. They responded to the tip on Monday.
"We spoke with the owner on the cell phone and she gave us permission to come on the property," said Flinkfelt.
When they got there, they found the animals covered in mud, feces, urine with no food, water or proper shelter.
"Brittany spaniel, black labs, chocolate labs, a handful of large to medium size animals here," said Flinkfelt.
According to the Henry County Property Valuation (PVA), the owner of the property is James Key of Louisville. Neighbors tell WAVE 3 the people renting it were Terri and Ken Smith.
"We cannot find them," said Flinkfelt. "We've talked to them and it was said they are not coming back here."
Flinkfelt said charges against them are pending. They could face animal cruelty charges and also federal charges because of the screech owl and hybrid wolf. Flinkfelt also said the couple was selling the animals on the internet and a flea market in Simpsonville.
Conditions of the mobile home the couple was living in were horrendous.
"We had to go in there and remove the animals we has hazmat suits on, masks, Vicks (VapoRub) under our noses to subside the stench," said Flinkfelt.
The animals were kenneled and taken to surrounding animal control shelters.
"I've been saying to some, Merry Christmas we are getting you put of here," said Lisa Elswick, a volunteer.
Like many volunteers, Elswick has been helping with the rescue around the clock.
"The main thing is getting them back to the shelter getting them baths," said Elswick. "They are atrocious, getting them hydrated, some will need medical attention."
At the Henry and Trimble County Animal Control and Shelter, Chihuahuas, Pomeranians, Yorkies, birds and even hermit crabs are getting the TLC that they desperately need.
"The good thing is they are not gonna be here anymore," said Elswick. "They are going to get the love they need so bad. You look at them and the look in their eyes ... they are worth it."
Flinkfelt said one dog was deceased on the property and a few guinea pig carcasses were found in a dog food bag in a dumpster.
According to Flinkfelt, the animals are now on hold because it is a pending court case. They will be placed into rescue groups and foster care. If you would like to be a foster parent for the rescued animals call 502-845-8050.
The shelter is also in need of donations like cleaning supplies, food, crates, blankets, and towels.