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Police: 90 dogs found living in cages stacked floor to ceiling in Pennsylvania home

CBS News Live
CBS News Pittsburgh Live

BEDFORD TOWNSHIP, Pa. (KDKA) -- Ninety dogs and multiple animal carcasses were found inside a Bedford County home, prompting an investigation by police and a plea for help from the animal shelter caring for them.

Pennsylvania State Police said they were called to a home on Business 220 in Bedford Township on Dec. 30 for a report of possible animal cruelty. Troopers said they couldn't make contact with anyone, but as they approached the house, they noticed the "overwhelming smell of dog feces" from the outside and when they knocked, they heard multiple dogs inside. 

Police said they came back the next day and made contact with the property owners, an 82-year-old man and a 62-year-old woman whose names weren't released. While they were talking, troopers said they saw multiple dogs in the backyard that appeared to be dirty and covered in feces. One of the dogs appeared to have open wounds on its ears, police said.

At first, the owners told troopers they had about 15 dogs in the house, but police said they later changed their answers and said there were 60.

Police said they found 90 dogs in the house, along with eight cats and a turtle. There were also multiple dead animals, police said. The animals were found in cages stacked from floor to ceiling and appeared to be malnourished and covered in feces and urine. 

The animals were removed with help from multiple vets and animal rescues as well as volunteers.

The Bedford County Humane Society posted a plea for help to Facebook on New Year's Eve, asking for blankets, towels, money and volunteers the next morning. They said the dogs needed bathing, nail trims and grooming. The humane society said its shelter was already full with 40-plus dogs, and they didn't have enough employees to care for 90 more. 

The community pulled through to help, and on Monday, the humane society said it was overwhelmed by the situation, but also overwhelmed with gratitude for the response to its request. When employees showed up in the morning, the humane society said they were greeted by a line of volunteers at the door. 

The humane society said it'll need help in the coming weeks. It's still looking for volunteers, cleaning supplies and monetary donations. 

As for the investigation, police said it's ongoing. 

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