By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
Less than a month after nearly 60 large dogs were rescued from a “hoarding” case in Cheyenne, the animals are getting a new lease on life — and some are getting new homes, as well.
Cheyenne Animal Shelter branding director Niki Harrison told Cowboy State Daily on Wednesday that life has continued to improve for the dogs who were brought in last month.
“I would say the majority, if not all of the dogs we had before the hoarding case happened have been adopted,” she said. “We’ve had a lot of foster-to-adopt situations where people took on some of the dogs as sponsors and just ended up falling in love.”
Harrison did not know how many dogs from the hoarding case had been adopted.
Last month, nearly 60 “giant” dogs, including St. Bernards, pitbulls and more, were discovered living in a what authorities described as a hoarding situation in south Cheyenne. The dogs’ owner did not live at the property with the animals.
Around 15 or 16 escaped one day in April after the high winds caused a fence to blow down.
Since the dogs were recovered, the Cheyenne Animal Shelter staff and volunteers have been working day and night to care for the animals. While all of the dogs were mostly healthy, many were filthy and required spaying or neutering surgery.
“In a typical hoarding situation, we have no idea what we’re coming into as far as the mental and physical conditions of these dogs,” Harrison said. “When they’ve been cooped up in a house for so long, there can be a lot of disease. There are all kinds of things that can happen.”
Some pet groomers and veterinarians in Cheyenne donated their time and services to the animal shelter to help the dogs.
Harrison noted that while all of the rescued dogs will need time to get better socialized, they are very sweet animals.
“I think overall, every single one of them is going to make a great companion,” she said. “They have some work as far as training and just need a little bit of patience.”
She added that the dogs will likely do best in homes where the owner already has a dog, one who is confident and can teach the rescued dogs about life in a typical household.
From now until Sunday, the animal shelter is hosting an “Empty the Shelters” promotion, in which all adult dogs are available for just a $25 fee. Adult cats and other animals, such as guinea pigs, are available at no cost.
Most of the dogs that are available for adoption at this time are from the hoarding case.
“When the dogs came in, we had more than 225 animals in the entire shelter,” Harrison said. “Now, we’re under the 200 mark, so we’re trying to get back to that calmer spot. Everyone here just needs a day or two of a break, but things have gone so much better than expected due to the help of the community.”
The rescued dogs remaining at the shelter on Wednesday and observed during a tour of the shelter’s kennels appeared to be in higher spirits than when they first arrived at the facility.