SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. - Over 100 dogs are now looking for forever homes, after a team of Santa Barbara County Animal Services staff impounded the animals from inside a home in Lompoc.
On Thursday, the owner relinquished legal custody of 104 dogs, which are mostly Chihuahua and Chihuahua mixes.
A concerned citizen reached out to Animal Services about the dogs, which resulted in the site visit.
An operation of this size requires a large team to impound the dogs in a safe and humane manner and meet the immediate needs of the animals, while supporting safety and health protocols for staff.
The 18-member team included a veterinarian, two registered veterinary technicians, four Animal Control officers, three supervisory staff, five support staff and three volunteers who worked late into the night to ensure that all of the dogs received proper care and shelter.
The dogs received a preliminary assessment on site and were then transported to the Santa Maria Animal Center for further assessment, vaccinations and care.
After assessing the situation, Animal Services staff quickly coordinated with rescue partners to find placements for all of the dogs who will be transported to Santa Ynez Valley Humane Society, Santa Barbara Humane Society, Ventura County Animal Services, Ventura Humane Society, Woods Humane Society and Burbank Humane Society where they will be available for adoption.
“This was an extraordinary effort on the part of our team and rescue partners,” stated Angela Yates, Director of Santa Barbara County Animal Services. “Staff and volunteers quickly went into action, and within 12 hours of receiving the initial report, 104 dogs had received veterinary care, were safely housed at our Santa Maria shelter for the night, and rescue transports were scheduled for this morning. What initially seemed impossible became a shining example of what we can accomplish through dedication, teamwork and committed partnerships!”
An investigation is underway into why the owner had the large amount of dogs living at the home.