Volunteers from the Humane Center of Tioga County responded to an emergency situation, rescuing more than 30 cats and dogs.
Wellsboro police chief Jim Bodine said the pets were discovered June 19 in a Calkins Lane home. The individual was found deceased by a girlfriend.
Police responded to the scene around 7:30 p.m. to discover numerous animals, alive and dead, in the house.
Krys Knect from the Humane Center responded. She and volunteers worked for several hours to capture 29 cats and three dogs, crate them, and transport the animals to nearby animal shelters.
Some of the animals were frightened, but volunteers were able to take control of them, said Bodine.
“They worked with a dog that wanted to tear us up. By the time they left, it was eating out of their hands and having good old time,” said Bodine.
Joan Smith-Reese, executive director for Animal Care Sanctuary, said the shelter received 26 cats around midnight that night. Since then, the cats have been seen by a veterinarian, spayed and neutered, received shots and 23 are now ready for adoption. Three still require medical treatment before they will be available, she said.
“It’s exciting. One is completely blind, but he is ready for adoption and his forever home. He’s really come out of his shell and loves interacting with other cats,” said Smith-Reese.
All of the cats are currently in East Smithfield; some will be coming to the Wellsboro shelter in the future, she added.
The dogs and the remaining three cats were taken in by Second Chance Animal Sanctuary, said Bodine. Two of the dogs are housed with the shelter’s humane officer until there’s space, said a spokesperson.
The police chief was impressed by the response team and their professionalism.
“It was phenomenal. Without them, this county would be missing a huge component we direly need for the welfare of our animals,” said Bodine.