FULL STORY: Neighbors Say Dogs Left To Starve
POSTED: Tuesday, February 22, 2011 - 4:28pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, February 23, 2011 - 10:48am
SOCORRO - Neighbors in Socorro say guard dogs on their street have been left to starve to death. And they say the dogs have been terrorizing the neighborhood by killing cats and even attacking people.
Neighbors say it's been going on for months but El Paso County Animal Services says they're limited in what they can do.
Now the neighbors say they're at their wits end.
"They have a basic right to be taken care of, every living creature has a basic right to food," Martha Keagle. But Keagle said that isn't happening. She said the pit bulls are guarding a property no one lives in, and they're starving.
"Her hips jut out; her ribs, I mean, she's emaciated," Keagle said. And she said they're turning violent as a result.
"The male is very aggressive, you want a fence between you and him, but they get out all the time," Keagle said. They've seen neighborhood cats get attacked and even say the female dog gave birth - but the pups are nowhere to be found.
Keagle began dropping dog food through the fence but says shortly after, the owners put a sign up, asking neighbors not to feed the dogs.
"Well, geez folks, somebody's got to," Keagle said.
The sign has since blown away, but the neighbors' worries haven't.
"We're seeing these dogs deteriorate slowly but surely," said another neighbor, Guadalupe Escalante.
We talked with the owner of the property today and he said the reason the female dog is so thin is because she sick. He said he was going to take her to a veterinarian today and that he comes by everyday to feed the dogs. Neighbors though, say they don't even know what he looks like.
"With the cold weather I thought they were going to die," Escalante said.
We called El Paso County Animal Services and they said they've ordered the owner to take one of the dogs to the vet. If the owner doesn't comply, then Animal Services can go to court, get a search warrant, and seize the animals.
But they say that's a long and complicated process. Keagle said no matter how complicated, something must be done.
"Do something about it; love is not a feeling, it's an action," she said.
Animal Services said the owner was supposed to follow up with them today, but he has not.