MOUNTAIN HOME, Idaho — Dozens of dogs and three cats that were rescued from a hoarding situation in Mountain Home have been handed over to the Idaho Humane Society.
A judge ordered the pets be forfeited on Friday, in lieu of the owner paying for the cost of their care until the criminal case against her is complete. The order came almost three months after the 55 toy breed Papillions were seized from a 700-square-foot home.
Officials say the dogs were being kept in cramped and unsanitary conditions, and that the house was covered in feces and urine. Firefighters entered the house in protective suits and oxygen masks to rescue the animals.
Kathleen Pamela Schweikert, 60, was charged with animal cruelty, owning unlicensed dogs, and operating without a kennel license. Her trial in the cruelty charge is set to begin in May.
The dogs and cats have been cared for by the Idaho Humane Society, which spent thousands of dollars providing food, shelter, vaccinations and medical care to the animals.
The judge's order means the dogs and cats can now be put up for adoption, which Idaho Humane officials say will happen as soon as spay and neuter surgeries and other medical procedures are complete.
Several of the Papillions were pregnant when they were rescued and have given birth in the shelter, bringing the overall number of dogs to 69, counting the new puppies.
Would-be adopters are currently prohibited from visiting any Idaho Humane Society Shelter in an attempt to slow the spread of coronavirus. Adoptions are currently being considered through application and by appointment only.
For more information, visit the Idaho Humane website here.