Nebraska Humane Society working to identify species after 500 animals removed from Papillion home
PAPILLION, Neb. (WOWT) - A Nebraska Humane Society veterinarian said Wednesday afternoon that they were working to identify the many species among the 500 animals removed from a residence earlier this week in order to provide proper care, noting that some animals had to be euthanized.
NHS removed about 250 birds, chinchillas, snakes, lizards, and other small animals from a home southeast of 84th Street and Giles Road over the course of two days on Monday, then went back Tuesday and removed about the same number of animals including reptiles, turtles. rabbits, guinea pigs, and small birds, such as finches.
“It is by far the largest number of species that we have had at once and that’s what makes it its own thing and its own complicated factor,” said Dr. Elizabeth Farrington, a veterinarian at NHS.
She said Wednesday that the animals are getting settled in right now and that it’s important to let exotic animals, in particular, do this so that they endure less stress.
“A lot of these guys are much more relaxed already. We are starting to have them as they are getting warmer, the reptiles were very cold, we are getting them warmer, we are getting them hydrated. They are starting to become more active,” said Dr. Farrington.
Many of the animals were showing signs of neglect, some with overgrown beaks and claws, which affect the animals’ ability to eat. Some were injured and some were in critical condition and had to be euthanized, Dr. Farrington said.
NHS is still working to identify all the species of the animals, estimating that there are more than 150 species to determine, in order to make sure they get proper care, she said.
Dr. Farrington said the animals are considered evidence and part of the ongoing investigation, but a legal determination hasn’t been yet regarding animal cruelty charges or any other applicable charges.
“About the only thing that wasn’t in the house, to my knowledge, was cats,” she said, noting that in addition to several exotic animals, several dogs were also found at the residence.
Dr. Farrington said the Humane Society is talking with Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium veterinarian staff and curators to see how they might be able to assist with the animals, but with several agencies involved because of the various species collected.
“I have already been in contact with a number of veterinarians with exotic experience or specialty board certification and so we are making sure that we are getting the right hands in the right places right now,” said Dr. Farrington.
Watch Dr. Farrington’s update
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