Authorities: 38 seized dogs lived in 'deplorable conditions'
CENTRALIA, Wash. -- The owner of 38 dogs seized in Centralia vows to fight to get them back. However, the animal shelter now housing the dogs says the conditions were so deplorable it's possible the courts will go against the owner and the pets will be up for adoption in as soon as a month.
The owner's own family says it's about time something was done.
There are 21 adults and 17 puppies in safe keeping at the Lewis County Animal Shelter. Some are just one day old, having been born during Thursday's raid. They are daschunds, Chihuahuas, bassets, mixed breeds and a boxer.
The sheriff's office said they were all found in deplorable conditions inside an old RV on the Jimmie Jemison's property. The floors and counters were covered in feces. And the smell was horrific.
"I've never had to rinse my eyes out with water because of the ammonia before, and I had to do that a couple of times," said animal shelter manager Amy Hanson.
But Jemison says this is all a conspiracy to take his dogs.
"All they did was take my most precious dogs," said Jemison. "They have dogs that worship me."
He says his place is perfectly fine for his dogs. He kept them fed and sheltered inside a motor home, but feared the authorities were coming to get them.
"The problem is I was pinned in there for nine days," Jemison said. "I was afraid to come out or let my dogs out. So things got out of control."
Deputies said when they got a warrant for the dogs Jemison resisted, so they tased him. And then Jemison's own boxer severely bit his leg. He's now hospitalized for that and other medical problems.
Jemison's own family says it's about time this happened.
"I've been uncomfortable about it for many years and I did what I could to stop him and it wasn't possible, so this is what it came to," said Jemison's brother, Bill.
Bill shares the property that is cluttered with motor homes and several other types of animals spread throughout.
Jemison's friend Mike Dooms agreed to come in and feed the other animals. He is somewhat taken aback by what he saw.
"Not something I would do," Dooms said. "I wouldn't raise animals in those conditions."
Another friend, Dolly Jones, came to see if any dogs were left in the RV but could barely get in because of the cramped conditions.
And so for now the dogs are going to be kept at the animal shelter while this case moves its way through the legal process. The animal shelter said keep an eye on its Facebook page for updates on the status of the animals.