Hundreds of animals found in filth continue to recover - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Hundreds of animals found in filth continue to recover

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After taking in hundreds of animals found in terrible conditions, a local animal rehab is now dealing with dozens of their babies.

In January more than 700 animals were rescued from a Vinton home. In the last month, a few of those animals had surgery and some needed intense care, but most of the animals are doing much better.

There's a lot going on at Wildthunder Rehab in Independence. The place is packed tight, full of mice, birds and reptiles, all recovered after living in squalor in a Vinton home.

"A lot of the animals were pregnant when they moved in so we've had to re-situate, separate boys from girls...just constantly trying to find places for them," said Tracy Belle, Founder of Wildthunder Wildlife & Animal Rehabilitation & Sanctuary.

Rodents take up an entire room at Wildthunder rescue, hundreds of them rescued from the Vinton home, used for breading and profit.

"The conditions they were in was horrendous, the amount of just dirty bedding and deceased animals everywhere and just the conditions they were in was awful," said Belle. "It was absolutely probably...not probably, it was number one, it was the worst conditions I've ever seen." 

Other animals, including rats, rabbits, chinchillas and bearded dragons are also all recovering under Belle's care.

"The initial headcount was 388 and that wasn't counting every new pinky that was in a tank, we tend to leave the new babies alone," said Belle. "That was the initial count, but since then we've had probably well over 150 births just in rodents alone."

Animals are everywhere, and Belle and her volunteers have spent a dozen hours catering to them a day, but she say's it's worth it.

"To be able able to see an animal come in, in those conditions and be able to see it thrive, that's exactly why we do what we do," said Belle.

Wildthunder only has about half of the animals recovered from the Vinton home, the other half is at another rehab.

Belle says she is hopeful the adoption process can start soon.

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