Four dogs that arrived at the Westbrook Animal Care and Control Center on Wednesday are in need of new homes and some special tender loving care.
The two female and two male poodle-Shih Tzu mixes came to the shelter as a result of an increasingly common kind of neglect. The elderly owner could not properly care for them because of declining health.
“These guys are a classic case of never (being) vetted, never been groomed -- absolutely covered in fleas. They spent a long time scratching because (of) bacterial infections, eye infections,” Sandra Bannon, of the Westbrook Animal Care and Control, said.
The four dogs are believed to be between 1 and 4 years old and Westbrook’s animal control officer says they are examples of a growing problem.
“The owner was older, got very ill, got hospitalized. These dogs were left in a neglectful situation -- unintentional neglect -- and it happens every day across America,” Bannon said.
“We are finding -- it’s almost academic now -- people that can no longer afford veterinary medicine, so a lot of treatments that should be happening to their pets (are) not happening,” Bannon said.
The dogs aren’t quite ready to be adopted yet, but they will be eventually.
For now, animal control is asking for the community’s help to cover the costs of supplies needed to get the dogs well, including steroids and antibiotics, and services such as grooming assistance.
“My hope is to get them healthy, get them into new homes where they can live healthy lives,” Bannon said.
To make a donation for the care of the four dogs or any of the animals at Westbrook Animal Care and Control, email animal control officer Sandra Bannon at OLwarden44@gmail.com.