May 2019

hoarding – At the request of the Denton County Sheriff’s Department, AIR Responders assisted with the seizure, transport, vetting, care and placement of 89 animals living in a home with 6-8 inches of feces and urine.  The heat and ammonia levels were so high that officials would only allow the extraction team in the house for 15 minutes at a time, even though they were equipped with Hazmat suits and respirators. The stairs on the staircase were not visible and looked like the side of a hill. The animals were living in holes in the walls to get out of the inches of feces. This was by far the worst case of inhumane living conditions Monica Ailey, President of AIR and a 14 year veteran in the Emergency Response field, has ever experienced. It took the AIR extraction team 8 hours to clear and load the 89 animals (cats, dogs and a dove) into their two Response Units (40ft inclosed, climate controlled trailers).  The animals were then transported to a temporary emergency shelter situation where the team spent the next 10 weeks providing each animal medical attention, daily care and enrichment every day. It took a village to get the animals to a point of being ready for placement. Since Texas shelters were in crisis mode, there were no viable placement options for these animals that were going to need more one on one attention to help them to trust and teach them how to enjoy life as a dog that is apart of a family. We were able to reach out to our national contacts at HSUS and they were able to connect us to out of state placement options in WI, IA and MN that have the resources the animals needed.  After transporting the animals to the receiving Partners, we then had 5 dogs left that were not improving behaviorally.  Through another great partnership with another national organization, ASPCA, we were able to get the remaining 5 dogs accepted into the ASPCA’s Behavioral Center. There, they will undergo a program for fearful dogs in the hopes they can learn to become and enjoy being a part of a loving home.  This Response was by far our most costly in every aspect of our resources to date. Length: 10 weeks. Placement: 97% positive outcome