Animal rescuers descended upon a house in Vlotho, Germany, to find a grisly sight. They found more than 50 dogs and small animals, most in extreme stages of neglect, covered in filth and wounds.
Five guinea pigs and two rabbits were among the rescued animals, according to the Daily Mail. The Eichenhof Animal Shelter said the find was the most shocking case of neglect it had ever seen.
One of the guinea pigs was so covered in matted hair that its skin was tearing from the weight. Two guinea pigs were covered in bite marks from one another.
Many of the dogs were covered in feces and urine. One of the dogs was so covered in matted fur that rescuers thought it was a sheep until its fur was sheared.
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"You may have heard of the confiscation of well over 50 animals (dogs and small animals) on [Jan. 11]," the Eichenhof Animal Shelter posted to its Facebook page on Jan. 15. "It was very sad to see what [state] the animals were in. ...Especially Stanley, a little, young Yorkshire (I hope I got the breed properly, otherwise correct me) had touched me very much. Stanley was standing up in his...urine…[and] The excrement had already eaten into the skin, so he had to have [been in] pain."
The rescue operation depleted the resources of the shelter. In an appeal to donors, the shelter is asking for help.
"I would also like to take the opportunity to call for donations," Eichenhof Animal Shelter continued in its Facebook post. "The veterinarian bill [has been] determined, [and] with so many 4-legged animals, [it is] very high...the animal shelter can use every cent well."
Several dog groomers offered their services, and people donated shampoo, food and money for the animals.