published Thursday, March 15th, 2012

Animal control pulls 24 dogs from abusive living conditions

Walker County Animal Control is working to clear the home of an alleged animal hoarder.
Walker County Animal Control is working to clear the home of an alleged animal hoarder.
Photo by WRCB-TV Channel 3 /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Walker County Animal Control rescued 24 chihuahuas from a Rossville trailer that was covered in feces, rats and cockroaches.

Authorities responded to a call on Thursday at 601 James Street where workers found the dogs abandoned, said Animal Shelter Director Alison Smith.

When workers opened the doors, they found 16 adult dogs and eight puppies crawling around under boxes and in the filth, Smith said. The smell was so bad it was hard to breath, she said.

“It was horrific,” she said. “What they’ve been subjected to is absolutely wrong.”

The owner wasn’t home and authorities are still investigation how many people were involved in the neglect, she said. But charges will likely be pending.

about Joy Lukachick Smith...

Joy Lukachick Smith is the city government reporter for the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Since 2009, she's covered crime and court systems in North Georgia and rural Tennessee, landed an exclusive in-prison interview with a former cop convicted of killing his wife, exposed impropriety in an FBI-led, child-sex online sting and exposed corruption in government agencies. Earlier this year, Smith won the Malcolm Law Memorial Award for Investigative Reporting. She also won first place in ...

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