David Howery was arrested earlier this month on 295 counts of animal abuse after neglected cats and dogs were found in his Clean Slate Animal Rescue in Columbia.
The Humane Society of the United States stepped in, set up an emergency shelter and received help from the Green River Animal Shelter in Adair County and Warren County’s Humane Society in Bowling Green.
Other Humane Society’s, like the one in Trigg County, are offering help, as well.
Ramona Hamilton of Trigg’s Humane Society said she expected to take in a few of those animals Monday.
“I was contacted by another shelter,” Hamilton said. “It wasn’t a hard decision at all. They need help, and that’s what I do. I do this because this is what the Lord tells me he wants me to do.”
Hamilton expected to take in at least six dogs on Monday, the same day Howery is to appear in court. The animals were to be transported from Green River to Bowling Green, where Hamilton was to pick them up.
She said she intended to have the animals spayed or neutered as soon as possible, hopefully before adopting them out.
“These were puppy mill animals,” Hamilton said. “They were bred in cages and didn’t get socialized. It’s a sad thing, and I have seen some really ugly conditions with animals.”
Locally, Hamilton said she spends a good deal of time bringing in animals left in Land Between the Lakes.
“[LBL] calls me when they get one and ask if I can take them,” Hamilton said.
As of Friday, Hamilton had five cats, a dog and a puppy available for adoption and a horse she expected to be claimed soon. The horse comes from another abuse case, was taken in by Hamilton malnourished and has been nursed back to good health.
After several years of fundraising and hard work, construction for a Trigg County Humane Society building is underway on U.S. 68 a half-mile west of the Ky. 272 intersection.
“Our money comes strictly from fundraisers and out of our pockets,” Hamilton said. “If the money’s not there, it comes out of my pocket. They’ve got to eat.”
Hamilton said the roof on the new building was funded by a donation from an individual who pledged to match money taken in from the society’s Ham Festival fundraiser. She said the society will also begin taking donations for its 400-mile Yard Sale fundraiser next week.
“We’ve been doing this for 13 years and we’re finally getting a building,” Hamilton said. “We’ve got a long way to go.”
Those interested in adopting a pet or assisting the Humane Society can call 522-3555. The society is a non-profit organization, so donations are tax-deductible.
Hamilton said those who need to find a new home for their pets should call the society first. While the society will take as many animals as possible, the small staff and lack of a finished building prevents them from taking a large amount at one time.