SPCA finds dead goats, seizes 49 other animals on Fannin County property

FANNIN COUNTY, Texas (KXII) -- More than 40 dead goats and 49 other starved and mistreated livestock were found on a Fannin County property.

"When I drive by, I just see the goats and there's no hay for them, there's no grass for them to graze on," Jodi Damesworth said, who lives up the street from the property. "They're just all over the place, it's just a bad situation."

But now, you won't see any livestock on the 13-acre property near Leonard.

"The landlord of the property said her tenants had a bunch of goats and sheep and there was a lot of dead carcasses laying around," Fannin County Sheriff Mark Johnson said.

The landlord reported it to the sheriff's office, who contacted the SPCA of Texas to help investigate the case. They found more than 40 dead goats and 49 other goats and sheep, without access to proper food, water or care.

"The SPCA was able to get a warrant to take those animals, to seize them but the owner voluntarily surrendered them," Johnson said.

The animals are suffering from various health issues including ear and eye discharge, overgrown hooves and various injuries.

Their owner could face criminal charges.

"Some of those charges are up to a third-degree felony," Sheriff Johnson said. "It's serious business now and it needs to be, because so many people are just neglecting and abusing their animals."

"We have cattle and dogs and I just can't imagine not taking care of your pets like that, that's horrible," Damesworth said.

Whether domestic or livestock, the sheriff said every animal deserves access to basic necessities.

"If you own them, you need to protect them and provide them with food and water and shelter," Johnson said.

"I hope that they learn that if you can't take care of your pets or what you get, then just don't get them, because there are people that will take care of them," Damesworth said.

The goats and sheep are now at an animal care center in McKinney. When they've recovered, they'll be put up for adoption.