Police seize starving fair animals
The Thurston County Sheriff's Office seized 10 starving animals — three alpacas,
one llama, three goats and three sheep — from a woman who was exhibiting them at
the petting zoo at the Thurston County Fair.
By Jeremy Pawloski
The Thurston County Sheriff's Office seized 10 starving animals from a woman who
was exhibiting them at the petting zoo at the Thurston County Fair.
The animals — three alpacas, one llama, three goats and three sheep — are in the
custody of Hooved Animal Rescue of Thurston County.
Connie Patterson of the rescue group said Friday that the emaciated animals had
'ribs that literally looked like they were going to poke out of the skin.'
County Animal Services Director Susanne Beauregard said the animals were
starving when they were seized last weekend.
'You certainly don't allow someone to hold the animals up as examples of
well-cared-for pets when they're being treated like this,' Beauregard said.
The animals came to the attention of authorities after fairgoers and other
animal exhibitors at the fair called police, Patterson said.
County Chief Criminal Deputy Sheriff James Chamberlain said Friday that the case
is being referred to the county Prosecuting Attorney's Office for investigation
of misdemeanor animal cruelty.
The deputy prosecuting attorney who handles allegations of animal cruelty could
not be reached for comment Friday to say whether charges would be filed.
Patterson raised the question of how the woman running the petting zoo was
allowed to exhibit starving animals, but fair director Rick Storvick could not
be reached Friday.
Beauregard said the woman is licensed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to
exhibit animals and should know better. The woman is the former owner of a local
pet store, now closed, that sold exotic animals, including snakes, monkeys and
big cats, Beauregard said.
At the fair, the woman also was exhibiting exotic animals, including a Siberian
lynx. Beauregard said the woman's exotic animals were not seized.
For the cats,
Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL 33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457
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