Pit bulls and pigeons rescued from hoarder's home need new homes
Walnut resident Richard McDonald, 75, seemed to have good intentions when he filled his property with pit bulls and pigeons -- many of the dogs were adopted from shelters because McDonald feared they'd be euthanized.
But the animals were found to be living in terrible conditions, and some familiar with the case say McDonald exhibits classic symptoms of hoarding behavior. A 1999 psychological paper on the subject described a hoarder as "someone who accumulates a large number of animals; fails to provide minimal standards of nutrition, sanitation and veterinary care; and fails to act on the deteriorating condition of the animals (including disease, starvation and even death) or the environment (severely overcrowded and unsanitary conditions), or the negative impact of the collection on their own health and well-being."
Prosecutors say neighbors complained for years about the situation at McDonald's home before one of the dogs got loose and attacked a visitor, prompting the filing of criminal charges and the confiscation of the animals. Our colleagues at KTLA explain:
He was recently convicted on more than thirty misdemeanor charges involving city code violations and is locked up at the county jail. Animal rescue groups and others stepped in and tried to find homes for about 30 dogs and 150 pigeons on the property.
Most of the animals have found homes, but about a half dozen pit bulls were left without one. Those animals ended up at a pound in Riverside until Fuzzy Dog and Cat Rescue, an organization run by Sheila Choi, "bailed" them out on Tuesday. Choi feared the dogs would be put to sleep otherwise. Now, she and others are trying to find resources and/or volunteers to take care of the dogs and find them permanent homes.
For more information on helping the rescued dogs and pigeons, check out Fuzzy Rescue on the web.