‘You can’t even imagine.' 49 animals removed from Ronkonkoma home; owner charged

The SPCA said the owner of the home has been charged with animal cruelty.

Caroline Flynn

Apr 3, 2024, 9:42 AM

Updated 16 days ago

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A Ronkonkoma woman has been charged with 49 counts of animal cruelty in what officers and animal rescuers are calling the worst case of animal hoarding they've seen.
The SPCA says a total of 49 animals were taken from the Motor Parkway home of Linda Hart after receiving a concerning report about animals possibly living inside of the 79-year-old's home.
Multiple agencies worked together with the SPCA Tuesday to safely remove the animals. Those agencies included the Suffolk County Police Department, Suffolk County Sheriff's Office, Islip Hazmat Team, Town of Islip Animal Control, Islip's building inspector and fire marshal as well as Lakeland Fire Department.
SPCA Chief Roy Gross said the majority of the animals were dogs.
"Some of these cages had to be cut open with bolt cutters it was so caked on. Some of the cages couldn't be lifted off the ground, they were stuck to the floor. It appears every room in the house had these dogs, birds and a cat living in there," Gross said.
Several animal rescue organizations including Yorkie911 stepped in to help. Yorkie911 founder Heidi Walker said she worked with a team of five groomers for hours Tuesday night to remove the matted fur from eight small dogs. She said they'd been living in 6 inches of feces and were infested with fleas.
"It was more than anybody should have to handle in their life," said Walker. "And these little guys? They don't deserve to live like that. They deserve a nice comfy bed and somebody to love them, pet them, give them love. That's what they're here for. Companionship."
Over the next few days, rescue groups including North Country Kids say the dogs they're looking after will be neutered and evaluated by veterinarians.
Anyone interested in fostering or adoption the dogs can reach the rescue groups. The information is below:
Yorkie911: Yorkie911rescue@gmail.com | 631-965-6418
North Fork Country Kids: Website | email


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