HOWELL TOWNSHIP - Authorities have rescued nearly 300 dogs from what they say was an extreme hoarding case inside a Monmouth County home.
Police and animal control officers arrived at the Bennett Road home in Howell Township Friday morning. The authorities were tipped off to the situation after neighbors complained about a loose dog.
A spokesperson for the Monmouth County SPCA says that this was the worst case of animal hoarding he’s seen in the county. There were 276 dogs rescued from the home.
“There were a variety of dogs from Yorkies to Chihuahuas to mixed breeds to pugs,” says Monmouth County SPCA’s Ross Licitra. “A majority of those animals have never left the house. They were born here and this is the first time seeing daylight."
News 12 New Jersey is told that there were multiple dogs inside the home that were giving birth to puppies as crews were inside.
In addition to crews from the Monmouth County SPCA, there were also crews from Saint Hubert’s animal control and the Monmouth County Sheriff’s Office on the scene to help with pulling the dogs from the home.
Officials say that the conditions inside the home were deplorable. Crews on the scene say that the smell coming from the house was so strong that they had to use masks or vapor rub to block out the smell.
Veterinarians examined the dogs as they came out. The dogs were mostly in healthy conditions. The dogs were loaded into crates and taken to nearby shelters, where they will eventually be put up for adoption.
The dogs’ two owners will be charged with animal cruelty.