SHAWNEE, Oklahoma – Residents of one Shawnee neighborhood say something needs to be done, but sheriff's deputies say their hands are tied. A home with dozens of pit bulls, horses, and a trash thrown about its yard is stirring up strong emotions.
The property is hard to miss. The sheriff's department says it has received quite a few calls from people passing by and residents who say the animals are being neglected. The property is located just across the street from the Shawnee city limits, no more than a half mile down the road from the Shawnee Animal Shelter.
"It makes me sick," said a Shawnee resident who asked News 9 to conceal her identity. "I want something done."
The property is filled with dogs attached to chains and debris thrown throughout the front and side yards. A neighbor says animals are being starved and is worried for their well-being. The county says they need not worry just yet.
"[The property owner] might have taken on more than she can handle, but right now she's in compliance," said Capt. J.T. Palmer of the Pottawatomie County Sheriff's Office.
The property owner tells deputies she takes in animals from shelters and nurses them back to health. The homeowner also tells deputies she gets help from the state to care for the animals. News 9 tried speaking with the homeowner, but only her neighbor would talk.
"If you're saying accusations that we're starving the animals, that's wrong," said the neighbor.
Deputies say the dogs are in good shape and the horses are looking better from the last time authorities were called to the home, but it's not stopping people from keeping the address a regular at county dispatch.
"In counties, we do not have a so called animal control," said Palmer. "If we had different statutes, something else could be done."
Regardless, the property is getting attention. The Sheriff's Office says the owner of the animals is willing to give them away to people who stop by the home at 1000 N. Leo Street, Shawnee, Oklahoma.