Humane Society of Missouri’s Animal Cruelty Task Force Rescues 55 Dogs, Recovers 20 Deceased Animals from Horrific Conditions in Stone County, Missouri

The dogs are headed to HSMO’s Macklind headquarters for emergency veterinary treatment

ST. LOUIS, Jan. 20, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Late yesterday afternoon, the Humane Society of Missouri’s (HSMO) Animal Cruelty Task Force (ACT) – one of the nation’s largest animal-rescue and disaster-response teams – rescued 55 dogs, mostly large-breed mixes, from a property in Stone County, Missouri. The rescued dogs were transported to HSMO’s Macklind headquarters in St. Louis to receive health evaluations and emergency veterinary treatment. The carcasses of 15 dogs and five goats were also found on the property, but it was unclear whether the animals died of starvation or froze to death. The remains were removed, and necropsies will be performed.

The emergency rescue was prompted by calls on Friday morning from concerned residents and the Stone County Sheriff’s office. Members of the Animal Cruelty Task Force deployed immediately due to the animals’ reported conditions and the dangerous cold. The temperature was in the teens when the team arrived on the property to find dozens of severely malnourished dogs without food, water or shelter, living among the remains of numerous deceased animals. The adult dogs were chained or tied to fencing or trees, while younger dogs were living together in an outdoor pen.

The property owner surrendered custody of the dogs to HSMO and was placed under arrest by the Stone County Sheriff’s office. 

“The fact that these animals have had to suffer, and that so many animals died from living without food or shelter is devastating,” said HSMO President Kathy Warnick. “We appreciate the swift action and support of the Stone County authorities in making this rescue possible. Without immediate intervention I don’t know how many more of these animals would have died. Now that they are safe, we hope we can count on the community’s support as we do everything in our power to care for these dogs and give them a second chance at a happier life.”

Donations to help support the care of these animals can be made on the HSMO website at The HSMO also is asking the public for assistance through donations of blankets, newspapers, dog toys, dog beds or anything else that can make these animals’ recovery more comfortable. Needed items also are available to purchase directly from Amazon on HSMO’s wish list.

The HSMO will make the dogs available for adoption after they have been given a clean bill of health by the veterinarians and evaluated by the animal behavior team. As the animals recover – medically and behaviorally – they will be made available for adoption on a case-by-case basis. There is no current timeline for when these dogs will be ready for their forever home, but interested adopters can check the HSMO website at to see when they become available.

To report an animal that may be in danger or is suffering from neglect or abuse, call the local police and the Humane Society of Missouri’s Animal Cruelty Hotline at 314-647-4400.

About the Humane Society of Missouri Animal Cruelty Task Force
The Humane Society of Missouri’s Animal Cruelty Task Force (ACT) is one of the largest animal rescue/disaster response teams in the United States. For more than 40 years, ACT has worked side by side with state, local and city law enforcement officials to investigate and help prosecute animal abusers.

Annually, Humane Society of Missouri’s 15 field-tested, professional animal cruelty investigators and staff:

  • Travel more than 350,000 miles
  • Make more than 10,000 responses to reports of abuse/neglect
  • Aid more than 20,000 animals

Humane Society of Missouri’s animal cruelty investigators understand the nuances of animal abuse law and the criminal justice process for documenting and filing evidence and work directly with sheriff’s offices, police departments and prosecuting attorneys to help ensure animal cases are handled in an expedient and professional manner. Humane Society of Missouri investigators also provide expert testimony in legal cases and before legislative bodies and provide consultation and training workshops for law enforcement, state agencies and local animal care and control workers.

Together, they work to hold people accountable for the abuse and neglect of animals in the St. Louis Metropolitan region and all of Missouri.

Contact Information for the Public
Report Animal Abuse: 314-647-4400
Donations: 314-951-1542
Humane Society of Missouri website: 

For more information contact:
Patrick Barry, BYRNE PR 314-540-3865
[email protected]

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SOURCE Humane Society of Missouri

Humane Society of Missouri’s Animal Cruelty Task Force Rescues 55 Dogs, Recovers 20 Deceased Animals from Horrific Conditions in Stone County, Missouri

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