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Dogs need rescuing from Dog Rescue

8:57 PM, Dec 2, 2013   |    comments
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HUDSON, Fla. -- Dogs barking and people yelling drew Pasco County Sheriff's deputies to the property on Montour Drive on Sunday. Once there, they discovered more than 50 dogs - many of them housed in crates.

Animal services officers were back at the house on Monday checking out the condition of the dogs, horses, and other animals there.

The good news -- investigators say there doesn't appear to be neglect or abuse, but there are still too many dogs for the owners to handle and the county took possession.

A code enforcement report from Sunday indicated that the house was full of feces and urine.

"It's just a situation where you've got too many dogs, suddenly pushed into a house and they just can't keep up with it," said Mike Shumate, Pasco Animal Services director.

The property owners, Linda and Joseph Romeo, and their daughter Jo-Lynn Romeo, run a charity called Sleepy Hollow Dog Rescue. But this rescue has been restless. For a time, all the dogs were in North Carolina at a relative's house. But according to the Davie County Sheriff's Office, the owner of the North Carolina house did not want the dogs and so recently, they were all trucked back to Florida.

Back on Montour Drive, one neighbor noticed the big transport truck.

"It was huge," said Judy, who declined to give her last name. And had questions about where all the dogs came from. 

"My concern is that we've had so many dogs missing in the neighborhood - lots of them," she said.

People at the house declined to speak with reporters gathered on the road. They voluntarily gave custody to animal services, but the county shelter is full too, so other rescue groups are now getting involved.

"They're getting a lot of help right now," said Shumate. "There's a lot of other rescue groups that are stepping up."


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