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Nine dogs left after owner’s death searching for new homes

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Posted at 9:21 PM, Apr 02, 2014
and last updated 2014-04-02 23:21:57-04

NEWCASTLE, Utah - The Humane Society of Utah rescued nine dogs from a southern Utah home Wednesday.

The dogs’ owner died last month, and neighbors said they tried to contact local shelters, but the shelters couldn’t help.

Rick Wening said after his friend and neighbor died in a car accident, he took on the mission of making sure the neighbor’s animals were safe. He found homes for various chickens, ducks and geese, but the nine dogs proved more difficult.

“There aren’t a lot of resources,” Wening said. “And unfortunately the organizations that are there to help, that can help, are manned with volunteers and rely on donations.”

Wenning said he called several animal rescue organizations, but he was told there were too many for them to commit to take them all. Even the local animal shelter didn’t have room.

Iron county animal shelter manager Deputy Jobe Peterson said they would have liked to help, but they only have 13 kennels total and have to keep strays a priority. Peterson contacted other animal rescues as well for help, and eventually the Humane Society of Utah caught wind.

“We got the information a few days ago,” said Rescue Operation Manager Jaran Sweat. “So we set up and make sure we’re ready at the shelter for them, that we’ve got some room for them.”

The team loaded the nine dogs up into a van and drove them to Salt Lake City, where they’ll be assessed by a veterinarian, and if all looks OK, placed for adoption.

“We’ll do an assessment on all of them” Sweat said. “Find out what kind of homes they’d do best in, so that we can place them in the proper homes.”

Sweat said Wening did the right thing contacting multiple organizations, as it can be difficult when people have more than the two dogs allowed by city ordinance.

Wening said it will be hard to see them go, but is glad they’ll be taken care of.

Click here for more information on the Humane Society of Utah.