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Wendy Reuer, Published August 09 2013

Fund closed for 170 dogs rescued from Wheatland breeder

FARGO – A fund set up to help with the medical and boarding costs for 170 dogs rescued from a rural Wheatland breeder has been closed with more than enough money collected to cover the bill.

Medical procedures and boarding costs for the dogs, which were taken from the home of breeder Darcy Smith on July 10, cost $114,903, according to Sgt. Tara Morris of the Cass County Sheriff’s Office.

The Casselton Veterinary Clinic took $95,060 off the retail bill, dropping the amount owed to $19,842.25.

Donations poured into a Bremer Bank fund set up for the dogs shortly after their rescue, totaling more than $36,509 by Friday, Morris said in a release.

The Casselton Veterinary Clinic took in the dogs and began treating them for various conditions, both physical and behavioral.

Morris said the clinic stepped up to the challenge of taking in the dogs on short notice.

“Finding a suitable facility to hold 170 dogs is a difficult task,” Morris wrote in the statement. “Finding the personnel to perform medical exams, treat existing medical problems, and provide 24 hour medical service was overwhelming.”

Court documents show the dogs came to the Casselton clinic with severely matted coats, and all the dogs tested positive for hook worms and coccidia, an infection.

Clinic staff also volunteered their time for the dogs and helped organize care for the dogs through a partnership with 4 Luv of Dog Rescue, Morris said.

The fund balance in the Bremer Bank account of about $16,667 will be donated to 4 Luv of Dog.

The adoption agency is now looking for permanent homes for the dogs after Smith relinquished his rights to the dogs in Cass County District Court on July 30.

To date, Smith has not been charged criminally. Morris said the criminal case is pending.

4 Luv of Dog board member Amy Kracht has said people interested in adopting one of the rescue dogs can go to the website at www.4luvofdog.org for information on the adoption process.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Wendy Reuer at (701) 241-5530