About 450 neglected German shepherds were rescued from two Middle Georgia counties this past weekend, prompting animal cruelty charges to be filed against their owner, authorities said.
Belinda Powell was charged after 350 dogs were found on a property she owned in Candler County on Saturday, and 100 more dogs were found on another property she owned in Montgomery County on Sunday, Atlanta's WSB-TV reported. Powell was a German shepherd breeder.
They were found living in filthy conditions, and many had serious injuries, WSB-TV reported. Some will require months of treatment and care to recover.
Claudine Wilkins, founder of the nonprofit Animal Law Source, was at the Montgomery County rescue operation.
“We were walking in mud and feces up to our knees,” she told the news station. “It was so bad that the igloos that she had for the dogs were submerged in water. So there was no place for these dogs to stand in a dry spot.”
The Atlanta Humane Society, Animal Aid USA, Animal Law Source and other rescue groups are now trying to find homes and funds to help the wounded animals.
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“It’s expensive. We have to house them, take care of them and vet them,” Wilkins said. “So these rescues that took them in need support.”
Marietta veterinarian Michael Good told WSB-TV that he took in four of the neglected dogs.
“They seem to be like typical shepherds — real sweet-natured,” he said.
Donations are accepted through GuardiansOfRescue.org/donate.