VAN BUREN CO., Arkansas (KOIN) — Authorities in Arkansas were reportedly forced to shoot more than 20 dogs in order to recover the body of a pet hoarder who was found dead in her home.
As many as 50 malnourished and aggressive dogs were found in the Van Buren County home when sheriff’s deputies were called to the property in August, the Huffington Post reports.
“She was an animal lover, she loved dogs, I know that, but it was kind of a hoarder situation,” Van Buren County Animal Control Director Reta Tharp told the Huffington Post.
Deputies reportedly had to shoot some dogs in order to get into the house. Once they were inside, they found the 65-year-old woman dead. Some of the dogs ate her remains, deputies said.
The state department of health advised killing more dogs after the woman’s body was found. The canines were not vaccinated, inbred and some of them were apparently very sick.
An estimated 8 dogs remain on the loose.
Animal officials said they were called to the home before.
“We took 103 [dogs] out, almost 3 years ago,” Tharp said of that prior visit. “At that time it was easier to deal with because she was there and she could help us.”
According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty of Animals, there are 900-2,000 new cases of animal hoarding in the U.S. every year, with 250,000 animals falling victim.