Owner surrenders dogs to social services

BEAVER TOWNSHIP, Ohio (WKBN) — Two dogs at the center of a social media controversy have come in from the cold.

Their owner surrendered the animals Monday, after pictures of the beagles left outside in cages started circulating around the internet.

Male beagles Colt and Hunter are now with foster families. The dogs were checked out early Tuesday by veterinarians at Angels for Animals in Beaver Township. Apparently, their owner didn’t want any more negative attention, so he turned the dogs over to the Mahoning County Dog Warden’s Office.

Pictures of Colt and Hunter started popping up on social media sites over the weekend, showing the dogs left outside in sub-zero temperatures in this wood and chicken wire hutch. News crews knocked on the owner’s door Tuesday in the 2500 black of Stocker Avenue in Youngstown, but received no answer.

After being examined by Angels for Animals, it was determined the dogs have some minor health issues.

“They both have ear infections, colt here is heart worm positive, and they both need pretty extensive dental work done,” said John Simpson, General Manager for Angels for Animals in Beaver Township.

Reports said that the owner used the dogs for hunting., and state law indicated that all they needed was shelter from the wind, adequate food and water.

“The people who have taken in the beagles are actually beagle experts, and we trust them to take proper care of the beagles, and proper care does not mean to be sitting out in a hutch, in the elements as they were with frozen water,” said Simpson.

Beagle expert, and president of the Trumbull County Beagle Club, Don Koches keeps about 30 beagles in outdoor kennels year-round. He keeps the dogs on a strict diet and feeding schedule and makes sure they have straw and fresh-, not frozen, water at all times.

“When I reach my hand in there, when the dogs are in there, and they’re staying inside the box, it’s very warm and comfortable in there,” said Koches.

Koches wants people to know all dogs kept outside are not necessarily neglected or mistreated. He said his hunting dogs perform better because they’re already acclimated to the cold conditions.

“And their comfort range differs greatly from the person that has a poodle in the house,” said Koches.

Angles for Animals said it will take care of the heart worm treatment for Colt, but they’re asking the public for donations to help with the treatment costs.

Both beagles will stay in foster homes until they’re ready and healthy enough to be adopted.

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