The Dotson family had expressed concerns in the past about rats coming into their home from their neighbor's house, and Donnie and Christina believed she may be an animal hoarder.
"She's actually a very nice lady, but she needs help. She is an animal hoarder," explained Donnie Dotson.
On Friday their suspicions were confirmed, when the Doddridge County Sheriff's Department and other agencies found nearly 200 animals in their neighbor's home.
The Sheriff's Department said there were 106 cats, 55 birds, 22 dogs, and 1 ferret all living in deplorable conditions, with most of them in cages.
"Pet Helpers brought a couple of the animals in from the seizure to us and they were all in fairly poor to extremely poor body conditions," said Dr. Amanda Hartman, a veterinarian with Middletown Animal Clinic.
All of the animals are now out of the home and with various animal rescue organizations including Pet Helpers, Animal Friends of North Central West Virginia, PURR WV, and the Harrison County Humane Society.
There are still a few animals at Harrison County Animal Control.
"All of them had skin infections to some degree, were covered in fleas, and had intestinal parasites. It's really sad because their spirits are kind of broken," said Hartman.
Teagan is one of the animals that Pet Helpers has in a foster home. Hartman said she has rarely seen a dog in such a bad condition.
"Teagan is beyond thin and she is extremely emaciated. She's starving for attention and food. She's had a very rough life, including basically living in a cage her whole life and not even let out to use the bathroom most likely," explained Hartman.
Pet Helpers volunteer Cindy McCuan is fostering some of the dogs. She said it's hard to see animals in that condition, but the main thing is finding them a good home.
"We shed a lot of tears, but what we try to focus on is getting them better and finding a happy home for this animal," said McCuan.
The Dotsons said they're ready to help in more ways than one.
"We want to help that way to foster them and find good homes for the animals. They're also collecting donations of trash bags and cleaning supplies to be dropped off at the Sheriff's Department," said the Dotsons.
They also said they are very grateful that someone heard their cry for help with the situation.
"I'm very appreciative I mean it seems like the problem was taken care of. I have to thank Mike Hedley. He's been a big part of this and stepped up when no one else would. I have to thank everybody that came to help the woman," said Donnie Dotson.
The Dotsons also said they haven't seen a rat since the seizure.
If you would like to adopt any of the animals you can visit the Facebook pages and websites by clicking on the following links: