Authorities in Ashtabula County are investigating after 22 dead dogs were found dumped off the side of a secluded road in Cherry Valley.
The county dog warden was called Monday about 17 dogs found dumped near the woods at a dead end road.
Tammy Dondorfer, animal welfare director at the Ashtabula Animal Protective League, went down with the warden and said at first, they thought it was a prank call.
What they found makes you sick to your stomach.
Instead of 17 dogs, they discovered 22. We are choosing not to show the photos because they are so graphic.
"My first thought was, did they suffer?" Dondorfer said. But that question remains a mystery Tuesday because she said it was not immediately clear how they died. There were no obvious puncture wounds and the dogs were not emaciated.
All of the dogs were a poodle-mix and appeared to be related, Dondorfer said. They ranged in age from 10 weeks to six years old. One was also pregnant.
Four of the deceased dogs were sent to a local veterinarian to have their tissues tested for possible poisons. The others were cremated and their ashes will be spread in a memorial garden at the APL during a service.
"We named every last one so they could actually be known as somebody. Because obviously somebody treated them like garbage and tossed them and we don't feel the same way," Dondorfer said.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Ashtabula County Sheriff's Office at 440-576-0055.