KILLEEN, Texas (FOX 7 Austin) - The Humane Society of the United States is assisting in removing nearly 200 cats and kittens and several dogs from a large-scale alleged neglect situation in Killeen.
According to the humane society, local authorities served search and seizure warrants on an 1,800-square-foot residential property at approximately 7 a.m. on Friday, June 14. The animals appeared to suffer from a lack of veterinary care and were living in deplorable conditions.
Several of them were nursing mothers with kittens, and a number of the animals were in need of urgent medical assistance and were immediately removed from the property.
The Humane Society of the United States' Animal Rescue Team is transporting the rescued animals to a temporary emergency shelter in an undisclosed location. The animals are being examined by Dr. Melinda Merck, a veterinary forensic consultant from Austin and Dr. Cate McManus from Irving Animal Services, and are receiving any necessary immediate medical treatment.
RedRover responders are assisting in the caretaking of the animals at the temporary shelter, and Emancipet is donating veterinarian and veterinary technician services at the temporary shelter.
"It is heartbreaking to see hundreds of gentle cats and kittens suffering in poor conditions," said Nikki Prather, Texas state director for the Humane Society of the United States. "We are thankful to the City of Killeen for answering the call to help these animals."
The assistance of the Humane Society of the United States was requested by the City of Killeen after concerns about the welfare of animals on the property were raised.
"We are happy to be able to work with partners to assist these animals and provide them with a chance to get the care they need," said Tammy Roberts, Killeen Animal Services manager. "We hope these animals will be adopted into loving homes once their immediate needs are addressed. The property owners have been cooperative—we often see in similar situations that it appears those responsible for the care of a high quantity of animals become overwhelmed."
"No animal should ever be deprived of proper veterinary care or forced to suffer in horrible conditions like what our rescue team saw today," said Kitty Block, president and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States. "We are committed to doing all that we can to get these cats and dogs the expert care they so desperately need. We encourage the public to contact authorities if they ever suspect that animals are in trouble or in need of intervention. Sadly, this story is not unique, but we are certain that these cats and dogs now have a chance at a better life."