UPDATE: No charges have been filed yet against Gene Fore, owner of the property at 123 7th, in Pond Creek, where 23 dogs were seized from “deplorable conditions" by police and Enid SPCA Tuesday, June 11, 2019.

POND CREEK, Okla. — Pond Creek Chief Mike Payne said he is pursuing charges of animal abuse for the treatment of the dogs at the property, many of which were in poor health, had open sores, were covered in fleas and ticks and insect bites, and had limited access to food and water.

Pond Creek PD is working with Enid SPCA, which is housing and caring for the dogs, to collect evidence of abuse and neglect. Payne said he plans to file charges “in the next day or so."

ENID Okla. — Enid SPCA worked with Pond Creek Police Department to seize 23 dogs Tuesday from a home in Pond Creek, Enid SPCA workers said.

"They were living in deplorable conditions," Enid SPCA medical coordinator Crissia Bullock said of the home where the dogs were living. 

"There was no food, and what little water there was was undrinkable," she said, adding that feces was "everywhere" inside the home. Many of the dogs also were suffering from open sores and flea and tick bites, she said.

Pond Creek police reached out to Enid SPCA on Monday, SPCA member Kendra Wright said. By 10 a.m. Tuesday, both SPCA and police officers were at the scene.

A veterinarian came along with the volunteers to evaluate the health of the dogs and determine if they needed to be removed from the home, Wright said.

"They are currently, all 23 of them, on their way back to the Enid SPCA to receive medical care and treatment," Wright said.

Wright said SPCA will need help from the community. Taking in such large number of animals is "a huge strain." Food, water, shelter, vaccinations and other medical care for 23 won't come cheap.

The best ways people can help are by donating money, food or volunteering time, Bullock said, but the "best way is by stepping up to foster."

A judge first must determine custody of the animals before any can be placed in a permanent home, Bullock said.

All 23 of the dogs are expected to make a full recovery, she said.

Police are not releasing the name of the owner or the address at this time, as the investigation is ongoing, Pond Creek Chief Mike Payne said.

The department is pursuing charges of animal abuse, he said.

Police began looking into the home after receiving a call from a neighbor concerned about the safety of a dog on the property, Payne said.

Payne said police also were looking into code violations at the residence. While on the property, Payne saw a number of animals that showed signs of insect bites going untreated, and there didn't appear to be sufficient water for some of the dogs.

After getting a warrant to search the property, Pond Creek PD contacted Enid SPCA to come inspect the dogs with the help of veterinarian,and determine if they should be removed from the home.

Payne said he likely would pursue charges after Enid SPCA finishes evaluating the animals for signs of neglect or abuse.

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Willetts is education reporter for the Enid News & Eagle. He can be reached at mwilletts@enidnews.com.

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