21 dogs, 17 horses rescued in Jones County

21 dogs, 17 horses rescued in Jones County
Photo credit: WDAM

JONES COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - About 40 animals were rescued in Jones County Wednesday night.

The Jones County Sheriff's Office said deputies were called to the abandoned property in reference to a vicious dog.

When deputies showed up to the property, they found the dogs in deplorable conditions, so they called the Southern Cross Animal Rescue for help.

Due to the large number of animals, Southern Cross called Southern Pines Animal Shelter in Hattiesburg for back-up.

Rescuers said dogs were running everywhere, some even getting hit by cars during the process.

"When we got out here and saw emaciated dogs and bones and horse carcasses, it was definitely gut wrenching," SCAR President Heather Williams said.  Director of Southern Pines Shelter Ginny Sims said, "it was vital for their survival to get out of there and get in a safe environment."

Rescuers said the dogs were severely emaciated and many needed urgent medical care.

Gims said some of the dogs had fractured or broken bones, like a puppy at the shelter named Jude.

The puppy had a fractured eye socket and multiple puncture wounds to its head.

In addition to the dogs, 17 horses that had been neglected were also rescued from another property in Jones County.

WDAM 7 News was told the woman in charge of the animals had rescued them herself.

She was responsible for the animals at both locations.

"The owner of these animals is not a horrible person, it's someone who has a lot of compassion for animals. But, when you have compassion for animals you also need to be rational and understand what you can take on financially and what you can't. Because when you can't, this is what we end up with," said Katherine Sammons, vice president of Homeward Horse & Hound Rescue.

Most of the dogs are being housed at the Southern Pines Shelter on North 31st Avenue, in addition to the shelter's normal residents.

Southern Pines is asking for extra volunteers this weekend to help with the large number of animals.

If you want to volunteer, you can go directly to the shelter or call (601) 544-6632. The shelter is open seven days a week.

All the organizations are also asking for donations to help with the large number of animals.  Southern Pines has set up a special fund for ongoing care and medical expenses for the animals.  You can click here to donate.  You can also visit the Southern Pines Animal Shelter Facebook page for more information.