Dogs Found Living In Their Own Filth - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

2/13/04 - Smith County

Dogs Found Living In Their Own Filth

A check on a woman's welfare yesterday leads to a gruesome discovery at a mobile home park in southern Smith County, animals living, possibly for years, in their own filth. It was the smell that drew attention, and because neighbors hadn't seen the resident in several days, they feared the worst. So, the manager of the mobile home park called Smith County Precinct 2 Constable Frank Creath, who entered the home, expecting to find a dead body.

"What a surprise we had when we got the door open and got in," said Creath. "The house was literally covered with animal feces, and animal urine, up to three inches deep on everything inside the house."

Residents and owners of the mobile home park asked not to be identified by name. But they did tell us a woman, who they identified as Samantha Shay, was living and working in the home with 5 adult dogs, 3 adult cats and 6 kittens. Neighbors say she kept to herself, and didn't allow anyone anywhere near her home. While there was electricity, there was no running water. They say she bathed at a friends house.

Constable Creath says the home is a total loss and should be destroyed. He says the acidic quality of the animal urine has eaten holes in the floors and doors, and the odor may be impossible to remove. As for the animals, the kittens and three of the dogs have been caught, all covered with highly contagious mange. Traps have been set for the rest of the animals, all of which will be turned over to the Humane Society of Smith County. The reason Shay hadn't been seen in days, Constable Creath discovered, was because she has been locked up in the Smith County Jail on traffic violations since last weekend. The constable's office has placed a hold on Shay, and charged her with 5 Class C misdemeanors for failure to vaccinate. Up to 5 cruelty to animals charges may also be filed.

Kevin Berns reporting kberns@kltv.com

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