Two dozen dogs, seized as part of a hoarding investigation in Tennessee, have been moved to the SPCA Tampa Bay for care and adoption.
The animals, many malnourished, some with matted hair and others covered with fleas, were sent by the Cheatham County Animal Control in Pegram, Tenn., near Nashville.
The dogs were unloaded Monday night by SPCA workers and quarantined at the facility, where they are being examined by veterinarian Cherie Buisson.
"We look for parasites, both internal and external, infections in the ears and eyes." Buisson said. "We listen to their heart and lungs and look for infections that we can hear in the lungs.
Buisson says the condition of animals is heartbreaking.
"We just want to get dogs into happy, healthy homes, and to see a dog like this that is going to take awhile and be in the shelter and is so terrified to be here because they don't understand what it is to be in contact with humans ...," Buisson said. "Most dogs, if you crouch on the ground, they will come right to you. These dogs back away."
It could take several weeks to nurse the dogs back to health. Once they are, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals will make them available for adoption.