Woman Arrested On Animal Cruelty Charges - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

09/11/03 - Smith County

Woman Arrested On Animal Cruelty Charges

"I can't remember not loving animals," explains Julia McMurrey one year ago during an interview with KLTV. McMurrey said then, her work at Paws Across The Planet, the shelter she created, was very meaningful to her.

"My reward is getting to be in the presence of God every moment of the day. These dogs know how to love unconditionally and they do it all the time."

But today, the SPCA says the love wasn't being returned.

"Anyone can see these animals are suffering," explains Dave Garcia, an investigator for the Dallas SPCA. "These animals have wounds, they're limping, there are dead rats in the water, they are eating rats for food. They are forced to survive in an environment that is almost impossible to survive in."

After weeks of investigation, McMurrey was arrested for animal cruelty. Now the SPCA is trying to help and heal the 197 dogs living in peril.

"Look at these two dogs here they don't even have food or water bowls in their cages. Those dogs can barely stand up and that dog can barely lay down in his cage," explained Garcia and he evaluated the grounds.

"If you look at this poor dog, its ears are so infested with ticks that they can't even lie flat like they are supposed to," explained Cindy Skidmore a vet with the SPCA.

"These animals have to live in this and survive in this, this is not a rescue. Do you believe this is a rescue?" Garcia asks.

In just the last two weeks, the SPCA says they've found 15 dead dogs on the property, lying in cages, or covered with heaps of sawdust.

"She loves those dogs," says Robin North one of McMurrey's supporters.

Despite these conditions, Julia's supporters say shutting down Paws is the wrong thing to do.

"If people would put as much effort into helping her as they are trying to shut her down, we could save a lot of dogs," said North.

That's just what the SPCA says they're doing, saving these dogs.

Michelle Mortensen, reporting.

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