UPDATE (02/17/17, 5:36 p.m.): Great news! The severely injured pup being treated at IVRC - Iowa Veterinary Referral Center, wagged her tail for the first time today! She is still in critical care 2 weeks after her rescue, but there is some light in her eyes now and that gives us a lot of hope for her recovery. If you hadn’t heard, veterinarians were forced to amputate her entire left ear last week due to the extensive damage it sustained. However, her leg wounds have been doing better, and at this time they don’t believe she’ll need surgery for them. She is still receiving round-the-clock care at IVRC and is under pain management and resting comfortably. She’s going to have a long road to recovery, so if you would like to donate to help with medical care for her and the 18 other dogs from the rescue, please go to http://ow.ly/lJ2e308Rxg4.
UPDATE (02/15/17, 4:45 p.m.): The Des Moines Register: "Owner of dead, neglected dogs raised more than $1,000 for animal 'rescue,' court records show." View Article >
- MONETARY DONATIONS to assist with medical treatments and on-going care expenses. Every dog that was rescued will need medical treatment in order to properly recover from the trauma they experienced.
- TAKE ACTION by signing up for the ARL Humane Action Network, and by contacting your lawmakers to help strengthen the punishment for these terrible crimes.
UPDATE (02/14/17, 4:36 p.m.): The disposition hearing in the Sandyville dog case has been rescheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 22 at 1:30 p.m. at the Marion County Courthouse in Knoxville. At the hearing, a Warren County judge will determine whether or not the 19 living dogs that were rescued in the Sandyville case will be given back to the suspect, Lindsey Morrow. The ARL is holding the dogs for Warren County officials until the disposition hearing has concluded. We will announce the decision as soon as we know it.
UPDATE (02/13/17, 4:21 p.m.) Lindsey Morrow is now listed as an inmate in Warren County jail: https://www.warrencountyia.org/sheriff/jaillog/index.php?id=F3B7732F-A112-453F-940B-58570DD5144B
See the story posted by WHO TV Channel 13 News.
UPDATE (02/10/17, 9:23 a.m.): The Sandyville case has generated a lot of questions about how to separate the good rescue groups from the bad. When choosing to support or send animals to a rescue or shelter group, the ARL recommends the following: - Check if the rescue is licensed with their state (the state of Iowa currently doesn’t have a license for “rescue” so many groups register as a “dealer”) - Check if the rescue is a 501(c)3 with the IRS (keep in mind this is just a designation for tax status, nothing more) - Check references – Veterinary references, references from a current volunteer or foster home (someone who has seen where the animals live), references from respected shelters/rescues in the area, etc. - Check online for Better Business Bureau complaints, Charity Navigator ratings, etc. - Most important, go visit and see things for yourself. That’s always the most reliable! The Animal Rescue League of Iowa is a licensed shelter with the Iowa Department of Agriculture (which means we are subject to random inspections, where dealers are not), a licensed 501(c)3 in good standing with the IRS (and annual independent financial audits), with thousands of references. We are also a Better Business Bureau Accredited Charity and a Charity Navigator 4-star charity (their highest honor). We are happy to give you a tour at any time. Learn more about awards/recognition we have received here: http://www.arl-iowa.org/about-us/recognition.aspx Learn more about our operation here: www.ARL-Iowa.org/Impact. Read about the Sandyville rescue here: http://ow.ly/sn9a308TtJn.
UPDATE (02/09/17, 6:30p.m.): It has been a week since we rescued 19 dogs and recovered 3 deceased dogs from properties in Sandyville and Indianola. Many of you have been asking about the sweet pup being treated at IVRC - Iowa Veterinary Referral Center for the severe injuries she sustained before her rescue. We have good news and not-so-good news. Sadly, veterinarians were forced to amputate her entire left ear due to the extensive damage it sustained. However, her leg wounds have been doing better, and at this time they don’t believe she’ll need surgery for them. This pup is still receiving round-the-clock care at IVRC and is under pain management and resting comfortably. She has been so strong through all of this, and we are grateful for your continued thoughts and support. If you would like to donate to help with the medical care for this pup and the 18 other dogs, please go to http://ow.ly/lJ2e308Rxg4.
UPDATE (02/07/17, 6:15pm): Thanks to the kind person who donated these big, soft beds for the Sandyville dogs today! As you can see from this sweet pup’s reaction, they’re loving them! We are SO grateful to everyone who has contributed items for the dogs’ care. Thanks to you, we currently have enough food, Kongs and other items for the dogs. Our biggest need right now is donations to help with their medical care, as some of these pups will have a very long road to recovery. If you would like to help with that, please make a donation here: http://tinyurl.com/z7ebccd.
UPDATE (02/07/17, 8:56 a.m.): The Sandyville dog rescue last week has brought-up a lot of questions about what licensing is required for animal welfare organizations and what those licenses mean. To help clear up confusion, the ARL has the following definitions on our website.
Licensed Animal Shelter*: According to IDALS: “Animal shelter” means a facility which is used to house or contain dogs or cats, or both, and which is owned, operated, or maintained by an incorporated humane society, animal welfare society, society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, or other nonprofit organization devoted to the welfare, protection, and humane treatment of such animals.
Licensed Animal Rescue: There is no definition for animal rescue in the state of Iowa, so many rescue groups are licensed as an “Animal Dealer”.
Licensed Animal Dealer*: According to IDALS: “Dealer” means any person who is engaged in the business of buying for resale or selling or exchanging dogs or cats, or both, as a principal or agent, or who claims to be so engaged.
Licensed 501(c)(3) Non-Profit**: According to the IRS: To be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, an organization must be organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3), and none of its earnings may inure to any private shareholder or individual. In addition, it may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates.
Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS):https://www.legis.iowa.gov/docs/code/162.pdf
Internal Revenue Service (IRS): https://www.irs.gov/charities-non-profits/charitable-organizations/exemption-requirements-section-501-c-3-organizations
UPDATE (02/6/17, 4:40 p.m.): The disposition hearing has been moved to February 15.
UPDATE (02/06/17, 8:00a.m.): A disposition hearing has been scheduled for Monday, February 13. At the hearing, a Warren County judge will determine if the 19 living dogs that were rescued in the Sandyville case will be given back to the suspect, Lindsey Morrow, or not. The ARL is holding the dogs for Warren County officials until the outcome of the disposition hearing has been determined.
UPDATE (02/06/17, 10:00a.m.): Remember the sweet pup we told you about a few days ago (who was found inside a camper with other dogs and had sustained severe injuries)? On Friday afternoon we took her to our friends at IVRC - Iowa Veterinary Referral Center because we knew she needed to be monitored overnight. Later that night she was still declining so she received a plasma transfusion and remained in emergency care throughout the weekend. We are happy to report that she is now in stable condition, though not out of the woods yet. Today she will be seen by a surgeon at IVRC to determine the next steps for her wound care. She is receiving round-the-clock pain management and monitoring and even took her first bites of food since her rescue.
UPDATE (02/04/17, 2:21p.m.): This poor dog was matted so badly, it took several staff assisting our groomer for FOUR HOURS to remove 4.5 lbs of solid matting the night of the rescue. While this pup is feeling a LOT better, the severe matting pulling at the skin and preventing blood flow, may end up costing him his eye. This did not happen overnight. This poor dog has been suffering for a very long time.
Lindsey Morrow with Bully Breed Miracle Network and Rescue has been charged with 5 counts of animal torture (aggravated misdemeanors), 5 counts of animal neglect (serious misdemeanors), and 17 counts of animal neglect (simple misdemeanors) in addition to other charges unrelated to the care of the animals.
Sign-up to help strengthen the punishments for these crime: www.arl-iowa.org/takeaction
UPDATE (02/04/17m 9:34a.m.): The Warren County Attorney's office announced that Lindsey Morrow has officially been charged this morning in the Sandyville dog case, in addition to multiple other charges.
Most disturbingly, she is the director for a "no-kill" group called “Bully Breed Miracle Network and Rescue”, described online: “Bully Breed Miracle Networking And Rescue is a non-profit, no-kill, volunteer dog rescue organization serving the Indianola, Iowa area. We are dedicated to rescuing dogs left homeless for whatever reason – dogs in public shelters where they are at high risk of euthanasia due to pet overpopulation, dogs given up by their owners because of difficult circumstances, and those in danger of abuse or neglect.”
Charges filed include: Ongoing Criminal Conduct, a Class B Felony, Theft in the Second Degree, a Class D Felony, Fraudulent Practice in the Second Degree, a Class D Felony, five (5) counts of Animal Torture, Aggravated Misdemeanors, five (5) counts of Animal Neglect, a Serious Misdemeanor, and seventeen (17) counts of Animal Neglect, a Simple Misdemeanor.We are so glad these dogs have now REALLY been saved...from her.
UPDATE (02/3/17, 7:36p.m.): The staff at the ARL see abused, neglected, and unwanted animals on a daily basis, and yet, it never gets easier. The team has worked tirelessly since we got the call on Wednesday evening to help with a deceased dog case - and then again yesterday when it was discovered there were living dogs at other locations who desperately needed saving.
There have been tears, sleepless nights, and even literal nightmares from what we have seen in the past 48 hours - and yet, today there were cheers.
Cheers for each staff member who stayed late last night, or came back to help after their shift had ended, in order to help receive (and document for evidence) 19 neglected and injured dogs.
Cheers for the outpouring of support from the community.
And, most importantly, cheers for the 19 animals who now have a warm bed, a safe place to lay their head, full bowls, and people to love them - for the first time in a really long time, if not, ever.
Thank you for the outpouring of support through your donations and kind words. We all read your comments. We know your outrage and share in your pain. We can feel your excitement when you are able to help. And we see when you defend us to those who choose to criticize or complain. This work is hard, but it's worth it - and together, we will continue to CHANGE LIVES for animals, and the people who love them.
UPDATE (02/3/17, 4:21p.m.): One of the dogs that was found inside the camper yesterday had been severely injured by some of the other dogs and was near death when ARL and Warren County officials arrived. The dog was rushed to the nearest veterinarian where they began steps to save her life. We want to thank the All Creatures Small Animal Hospital team in Indianola for literally saving this dog's life. When we found her, she was in hypovolemic shock due to multiple bite wounds and hypothermia - we didn't have time to get her back to our vets or she would have died. She is no longer at All Creatures, but still in critical care. She isn't out of the woods yet, but we're pulling for the little gal.
UPDATE (02/03/17, 11:53a.m.): Animal Rescue League of Iowa (ARL) officials assisted Warren County Deputies yesterday (02/02/17) to remove an additional 19 living and 1 deceased dogs from multiple properties in Indianola, IA, bringing the total dogs removed to 19 living and 3 deceased.
The original 2 deceased dogs were removed from a property in Sandyville, IA (near Indianola) on Wednesday (02/01/17) evening.
Some of the dogs on Thursday (02/02/17) were found in a garage, others, including 1 deceased, were found inside another residence, and the remaining dogs were found inside a camper that was attached to a truck.
One of the dogs that was found inside the camper had been severely injured by some of the other dogs and was near-death when ARL and Warren County officials arrived. The dog was rushed to the nearest Veterinarian where they began steps to save its life.
The deceased dogs have all been sent for a necropsy to determine official cause of death. The remains will be returned to the ARL for cremation once the evidence has been gathered.
The remaining living dogs (18) were brought to the ARL throughout the evening where a team of ARL Veterinarians documented the dogs’ conditions and began medical treatment. The ARL animal care team prepped kennels so the dogs would have a warm bed and plenty of food and water. ARL behavior staff are beginning a customized enrichment plan for each dog now that they are settling in.
Among the living dogs, many have visible urine and feces stains on their fur and sores due to their living conditions. An ARL groomer spent 4 hours last night, removing nearly 5 lbs. of matting from a small dog that was removed from one of the properties. Many of the dogs are underweight.
“The Warren County Sheriff’s office has been treating this case with the severity it deserves. Their investigation led to the quick discovery of the remaining dogs who desperately needed to be rescued,” said Tom Colvin, Executive Director for the Animal Rescue League. “The investigation is still on-going and the ARL has made ourselves available to continue to assist.”
The ARL now begins the long road of rehabilitating 19 dog to prepare for eventual adoption. The ARL is seeking donations of canned dog food and medium and large black Kongs for enrichment. Monetary donations to assist with the medical and on-going care expenses can be made here.
Update (02/2/17, 8:30 p.m.) This afternoon we assisted Warren County officials with removing additional dogs related to the case we told you about earlier. More updates will be available tomorrow.
Multiple Deceased Dogs Found On Property Near Indianola
Animal Cruelty Charges Are Pending
February 2, 2017 (Des Moines, Iowa) – On the evening of February 1, 2017 the Animal Rescue League of Iowa (ARL) received information about deceased dogs on a property in Sandyville, IA (near Indianola). We alerted the Warren County Sherriff’s office and met deputies on the property last night. The dogs’ bodies were found in various stages of decay, in and around kennels covered in feces, and with their collars still on their remains.
The Warren County Sherriff’s office is continuing the investigation and pursuing possible animal cruelty charges. The ARL has offered to cover the cost of the recovered bodies to be sent for a necropsy to provide additional evidence for cause of death. We will also continue to assist the Sherriff’s office however is needed so that the person/people responsible for these dogs’ deaths will be held accountable.
“These dogs are suspected to have suffered and died at the hands of those entrusted with their care and then their bodies were carelessly tossed aside. There is absolutely no excuse for this.” said Tom Colvin, Executive Director with the Animal Rescue League of Iowa.
Ironically, at the same time that the ARL cruelty intervention team was meeting with Warren County Detectives, the ARL’s pre-planned Humane Lobby Day was also taking place with animal welfare advocates from all over the state meeting with lawmakers at the state capitol requesting stronger animal cruelty laws – including provisions to protect future animals from convicted abusers.
“We continue to see cases like this throughout the state, but sadly, the punishments do not currently fit the crime,” said Colvin. “It’s time to change that. The animals deserve better and the people of Iowa demand better.”
The ARL has a lobbyist to work on animal welfare issues with state lawmakers, including strengthening animal cruelty laws for companion animals. Sign-up to TAKE ACTION at ARL-Iowa.org/TakeAction and pledge to support the lobbying efforts at ARL-Iowa.org/donate (RE: legislation).
About Animal Rescue League of Iowa
The Animal Rescue League of Iowa is Iowa’s largest non-profit animal shelter, caring for many thousands of pets each year. The ARL serves people and pets from across the state through pet adoption, humane education, pet behavior training, spay/neuter, animal cruelty intervention and much more. For more information, visit ARL-Iowa.org.