Abandoned Barnsdall Dog Shelter Causing Grief For Neighbors
BARNSDALL, Oklahoma - A Barnsdall family is concerned over dozens of dogs left abandoned on their neighbor's property.
They say three of the dogs attacked and killed their 10-year-old pet Schnauzer.
It's a sad story on two fronts, involving a beloved family dog, who was mauled to death, and another family, who was trying to help stray dogs until unfortunate circumstances made it hard for them to keep up.
On the property of 7th Hope Animal Rescue and Shelter, one look around, and you can see things appear to have gotten out of control. There are dogs roaming free, dogs locked in cages, and dogs living inside the trailer with trash and feces on the floor.
"There's no reason for it, to have these type of dogs," said next-door neighbor Danny Smith. "They're not doing these dogs any favors by bringing them out here like this."
Smith and his wife are still emotional over the loss of their beloved 10-year-old miniature Schnauzer, Boomer.
The Smiths say the dogs ran into their property and attacked Boomer, eventually dragging his lifeless body back to the trailer.
Darlene Smith, Danny's wife, said the incident has her afraid for herself and her grandchildren.
"When we bought this place out here eight years ago, it was my haven, it was so beautiful, and now I feel I'm a prisoner in my house. I can't enjoy my own property," Darlene said.
The owners of the shelter say it all went bad in the fall, when their 16-year-old daughter suffered a stroke. They've been out of state since then, tending to her medical needs. Their son and his friend have been left to care for the dogs.
"I don't know what people are expecting me to do," said the property owner's son, Josh King. "I don't know what people are expecting. I mean, I've been trying to keep up with it. It's a lot of work for one guy to keep up with 50 dogs."
King said his family has been trying to close the shelter for years, but have been unsuccessful in finding homes for the dogs.
The Smiths say it's a sad story, all the way around, and they hope the dogs get the help they need.
"I told my husband I don't even want to live out here anymore, because I'm so sad and frustrated and angry," Darlene said.
The owner of the shelter said she's been working with Barnsdall Animal Control to find new homes for the dogs, but the woman in charge of animal control told me she hasn't talked with the shelter's owner for at least three months.