LEBANON, Tenn.- A federal investigation has begun to determine who was behind a massive dog fighting operation discovered in Ashland City over the weekend.
On Saturday, Animal Rescue Corps - a nationwide nonprofit specializing in large-scale, logistically complex rescues - was called in by Tennessee authorities to assist in the rescue of 60 dogs used in a suspected dog fighting operation. The dogs were discovered after local officials responded to a brush fire near the home.
Volunteers found the dogs in deplorable conditions. The dogs were chained up, all required medical attention, were underweight, and had no access to food or water.
The dogs were taken to a warehouse in Lebanon where volunteers have been working to nurse them back to health. Veterinarians arrived around 8 a.m. Monday to begin checking each dog. They found the most common problem to be emaciation.
"The biggest problem we're seeing is thin body conditions, score and abrasions either from, whether it be environmental from rough ground or scratching at themselves from flees or some of the dogs from possibly fight wounds," said Jillian Edwards, a local Veterinarian.
Federal agents were called to investigate the scene.
While many residents have shown interest in adopting the dogs, officials said it's still far too early for any of these dogs to be adopted out, but after all medical problems have been addressed adoptions will be available.
According to ARC, large scale rescues can cost anywhere between $25,000 to $75,000. Usually they have some time to fundraise before getting on site, but in this case they were in Tennessee less than 24 hours after being called. That's why they're asking for donations either on their website atwww.animalrescuecorps.org or at the warehouse located at 200 Carver Lane, Lebanon, TN.