NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - East Texas News has new information about the medically needy dogs surrendered from an alleged large-scale breeding operation in Cherokee County.
"Nac Fosters" rescued around 30 puppies. The story has generated an outpouring of concern.
It's a dog's life for Ernie. The Schnauzer-Yorkie mix is living in a downtown Nacogdoches loft.
"It was love at first sight," said Jana Lafour, Ernie's owner. "I held him in my arms and i knew he was coming home with me."
Earlier this week, Ernie was removed from a small, filthy cage shared with two other dogs. Breeding was his only purpose.
The conditions lead to horrific ailments that veterinarian Stephen Garner is now treating.
'This is what we just got through finishing the surgery," Garner said. They were going to breed this dog. This dog had dog had multiple mammary tumors up and down."
Garner removed the tumors. He also pulled infected teeth. There are other dogs with ailments just as serious. It's caused by irresponsible breeding.
"When you have something like this and they're stored in boxes, in cages up high and not being veterinary cared for, they may be fed and watered, but there are other conditions," Garner said. "It takes a lot of work to breed animals, and if they're not doing properly than they need to be shut down."
Animal advocates remain concerned the Cherokee County breeder can keep up to 10 dogs under the designation of hobby breeder. Before, she had close to 100 dogs. The animals are surrendered in shifts as shelters find the dogs caring homes.
The Nacogdoches Animal Shelter is adopting out the "ready to go" dogs to help the Klein Animal Shelter in Jacksonville.
"The animal world is very small," said Theresa Jordan, the manager of the Nacogdoches Animal Shelter. "When anything like this happens, we got a huge number of animals that need to be placed very quickly. All the groups are contacted and everybody pitches in and does what they can to help out."
Groomers pulled mats embedded in dogs coats.
And the Liberty Bell restaurant is holding a benefit to raise money for vet costs.
"We are not normally open on Mondays, but it's a perfect fit for us and for them, so we'll open from five to ten," Katie Harris, the co-owner of the Liberty Bell restaurant. "We have quickly pulled live entertainment. They've pulled together a silent auction."
Nac Fosters is placing most dogs in foster homes to socialize the animals for adoption, so they'll find a home just as loving as Ernie's.
Nac Fosters has been joined by other animal rescue groups wanting to help the dogs. One agency took all the pregnant dogs, and another is looking for homes for certain breed.
"Texas Bling" is also pitching in by selling T-shirts as a fundraiser.
Again, Monday's "Cause for the Paws" benefit is at the Liberty Bell in Nacogdoches