140 dogs rescued in largest-ever operation of its type

Some 140 dogs have been rescued from a property in Leitrim in the largest canine rescue in the history of the State, according to the ISPCA.

The ISPCA said it worked with four other animal rescue operations to remove the dogs - most of whom had heavily matted fur and were suffering from skin, eye and teeth problems.

(A shih tzu left to suffer with eye, skin, and teeth conditions. Picture: ISPCA)

The dogs were mostly Bichon Frise crosses, King Charles Cavaliers and Shih Tzus, ranging in age from puppies right through to mature dogs.

(The same dog following veterinary attention. Picture: ISPCA)

The massive operation took a number of days to collect and rescue the dogs across a 5 day period and take them to the respective animal welfare centres.

(A King Charles - named Jin - at the ISPCA national rehabilitation centre)

"The female owner of the animals is a dog hoarder (a person who keeps and breeds dog without rehoming or having the necessary space, funding or ability to care for the animals) and had been making efforts to feed them but the situation had spiralled out of control due to the sheer number of animals," the ISPCA said.

“The condition of the animals was appalling, their coats were extremely matted and many had thick dreads of matted hair right down to their skin," ISPCA Chief inspector Conor Dowling said.

"Their coats were also matted with a mix of sawdust, dog faeces and mud and their legs were soaked in urine.”

“Many of the animals were also suffering from eye problems and one had to have an eye removed while the ISPCA was forced to put another animal to sleep, which is hugely disappointing while being a mercy there wasn’t more than one” he concluded.

The dogs have now all been removed for care and rehoming.

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