38 pets removed from 'hoarder' house near Bunkie
Tue, 08/09/2016 - 15:00
Raymond L. Daye
Three dozen animals were rescued from a Bunkie-area house by a multi-agency task force involving law enforcement and private anti-abuse organizations.
Maxine and Gordon Doughty, of 738 La. Hwy 3041, located between Hessmer and Bunkie, were charged with one count each of simple cruelty to animals. Avoyelles Sheriff Doug Anderson said additional charges may be filed after the medical evaluations of the animals are completed.
Toney Wade, an investigator with the private Louisiana Animal Cruelty Investigation Task Force (LACI) said the Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office and Deidre Normand, of the local People Eager to Save (PETS) animal rescue/shelter organization, called him to participate in removing 38 animals -- 27 dogs and 11 cats -- from what he described as a “hoarding situation” on Aug. 8.
“All of the animals are in bad shape,” Wade said. “All of the dogs tested positive for heartworms and were flea-infested.”
The animals were taken to Dr. John Fletcher’s veterinary clinic in Marksville, where they were given medical treatment and further tests to determine their health and suitability for adoption.
“They will be tested for other parasites and a determination will be made if they can be saved,” Wade said. “There will also be tests done to determine each animal’s temperament.”
Jeff Dorson, executive director of the New Orleans-based Humane Society of Louisiana, said the smaller, adoptable animals will be available through Normand’s PETS organization, which works with the Humane Society.
“People wishing to donate to help this effort can do so online or on the Humane Society Facebook or by calling 1-888-6-HUMANE (1-888-648-6263),” Dorson said.
Normand said donations, or inquiries concerning adoption of rescued animals, can also be made locally by calling her at 264-1212.
The vet bill for treatment of the animals is expected to be at least $4,000, Normand said.
Anderson said his office received a complaint of neglected animals at the Doughty residence and began its investigation on July 25. The Doughtys were instructed as to state law concerning the care of animals and told that a deputy would make a follow-up inspection to ensure the conditions had improved.
On Aug. 4, deputies returned and found that the animals’ living conditions had worsened. The Doughtys were issued a citation for simple cruelty to animals, Anderson said. A court order was obtained authorizing deputies to place the dogs and cats into the care of a suitable custodian. Anderson said the Humane Society of Louisiana was named custodian of the animals.
PETS will house the animals at its facility in Cottonport once all veterinary care is completed, Normand said.