The Humane Society of Missouri seized more than 250 domestic and farm animals from a property in Franklin County Tuesday for "deplorable" living conditions. In 2010, the organization removed 158 animals from the same property for being mistreated.
Animal Cruelty Task Force Director Mike Perkins says the rescued animals included 192 rabbits, as well as goats, cats, chickens, dogs and one duck.
His team and county sheriffs arrived Tuesday morning to find filthy cages piled with feces and crammed with animals. Some animals suffered from respiratory illness or lacked shelter and clean water.
Perkins says these situations often recur with the same owners.
"People tend to get overwhelmed,” he said. “They have issues. The recidivism rates for animal collectors are such that they will do it again if they do not get any help."
Perkins says the animals’ abuse underscores the mental disorders of some well-meaning but ill-equipped animal owners.
The animals will remain in the custody of the Humane Society of Missouri until a disposition hearing scheduled for Dec. 4 at the Franklin County Court House in Union, Mo.
If custody of the animals are awarded to the Humane Society, as many of them as possible will be made available for adoption.
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