24 dogs seized near Whitewood after animal neglect complaint

Black Hills law enforcement seized more than two dozen dogs north of Whitewood.
Black Hills law enforcement seized more than two dozen dogs north of Whitewood.(Connor Matteson)
Published: Oct. 16, 2020 at 12:16 PM CDT
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WHITEWOOD, S.D. (KOTA) -In an on-going investigation, the Lawrence County Sherriff’s Office has one person in custody for the neglect of animals.

Law enforcement says one person in the northern Black Hills could be facing felony charges.

According to them, they’ve had previous reports on this residence twice this year; once for animals running at large and another time for animal neglect.

After receiving an anonymous tip about another case there, Lawrence County deputies weren’t sure what to expect when called to Whitewood on October 13th for a complaint about dogs that appeared to be in a neglected state.

“I have never seen something to this magnitude,” says Patrick Johnson from the Lawrence County Sherriff’s Office.

After a search warrant was requested and granted, deputies searched the property and were shocked at what they saw.

“We found 24 dogs that were alive and we seized those and at that time of the search warrant we did find several dogs that were deceased,” says Johnson.

The Western Hills Humane Society assisted in assessing the animals and providing shelter. Also assisting the Sheriff’s Office were officers from the Sturgis Police Dept., the Deadwood Police Dept. and the Whitewood Police Dept.

Jennifer McCambridge from the Western Hills Humane Society says the dogs' ages range from three days old to three years old, but all of them were malnourished, not trained, and not even close to being housebroken.

“Some of them are very sweet and some are very terrified but they’ve never been trained and they haven’t had a whole lot of human interaction, some are starving for it some are scared of it,” says McCambridge.

She says there’s also been a lot of inbreeding in these dogs due to their deformed feet.

“It’s always sad, it’s always heartbreaking. No matter how many times you see something like this you just want to cry for them,” says McCambridge.

These dogs can not be adopted nor fostered until the investigation is over with and they are much healthier, but she says the dogs are doing better than when they arrived.

The shelter is looking for high protein high-quality food, puppy food, and also beds for the dogs.,

If you would like to donate, click on this link to head to their Facebook Page.

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