KEYSER - The 15 dogs rescued from a property in the Ridgeley area on Christmas Eve are all alive and being cared for, according to Mineral County Humane Officer Melissa Kidwell.

By Liz Beavers
lbeavers@newstribune.info
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - The 15 dogs rescued from a property in the Ridgeley area on Christmas Eve are all alive and being cared for, according to Mineral County Humane Officer Melissa Kidwell.
The dogs - eight puppies between 4-5 months old, two juveniles under a year old and five adults - were being kept on the property either tied to trees or locked inside an old trailer.
It has been alleged they were being kept for dog fighting purposes.
A concerned citizen alerted the News Tribune about the situation on Tuesday and the News Tribune, in turn, alerted Kidwell.
“There were two puppies and one adult female in the trailer, and a Malinois, or shepherd mix, tied to the outside of the trailer,” Kidwell told the News Tribune.
None of the dogs had food or water available.
Kidwell called assistant humane officer Aaron Smith for help, as well as deputies from the Mineral County Sheriff’s Office and the West Virginia State Police.
“The dogs were malnourished and anemic; they had no water,” she said, adding that Deputy Roger Reall opened a water bottle and gave some to the famished canines while troopers from the State Police opened dog food bags and starting feeding the dogs.
“They were starved,” Kidwell said.
The dogs were taken away in three vehicles and checked out.
“They were full of worms,” Kidwell said.
Most are now under her care, although several are being kept by foster families.
Five of the dogs are particularly aggressive to other dogs and could not be kept with the others, but they are all “great with people,” Kidwell said.
“They all have a full bowl of food and a full bowl of water now, and are happy to be taken care of and laying on a warm blanket,” she said.
As to the dogs’ future, Kidwell feels ten of them “will definitely be able to be adopted out,” but the five aggressive ones will be a challenge.
“It will take someone who knows how to deal with the aggression,” she said.
Kidwell continues to investigate the situation and feels that charges will be forthcoming.