358 dogs, cats and chickens were removed from a Catawba County, NC., home and officials are investigating if the chickens were used for cockfighting. Many of the animals were said to be living in substandard condition with dozens found dead in enclosures.

According to officials with Catawba County Animal Services, the animals were discovered Tuesday in a Claremont, North Carolina home during an investigation by the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office in an unrelated matter.


“Many of the animals appeared injured with open sores and missing feathers or sick and had signs of neglect,” officials said. “In addition to the live animals, officials also found 40 dead animals in cages and pens.” h/t

The animals were taken to a secure location and were fed and hydrated. They are being examined by veterinarians, tested for communicable diseases that are a public health risk.

Catawba County Animal Services and the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office are continuing their investigation and are expected to recommend charges to the District Attorney.