Animal rescue group may be forced to leave Long County - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Animal rescue group may be forced to leave Long County

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LUDOWICI, GA (WTOC) -

An animal rescue group with ties to Long County may not be welcome there anymore.

A little over a year ago, Animal Aid paid $39,000 for a foreclosed five-acre tract on Hugh Gordon Lane in Ludowici. The New Jersey-based group rescues dogs by the hundreds from Long, Liberty and McIntosh counties, taking them back north for adoption. They've helped find homes for more than 2,000 animals and travel to Georgia about every 30 days. The animals temporarily are housed at their Ludowici farm while they get medical treatment, shots and proper paperwork for interstate travel.

Saturday, they found out they won't be able to bring any more dogs to the farm – at least not until after a public hearing.

"The animal rescue shelter that came into the county," Commission Chairman Bobby Walker said. "The state gave them a license to come out and it's a residential area, and what it is is we have several people in the neighborhood whose (sic) voiced concern about the noise."

Walker says the commission is considering whether to evict the nonprofit for violation of the county's nuisance ordinance. The property is located down more than three miles of dirt roads on property Walker says is zoned as rural. A mobile home is located about 100 yards away. No one answered the door there Saturday afternoon.

Animal Aid's members don't think noise is the real issue.

"Basically, whatever we wanted to do to remedy the situation we were told, 'We just want you all out of here,'" Animal Aid's Karen Talbot said. "And so I can tell you the reason we are not accepted here is because all of our license plates say New Jersey."

Saturday, the group left the farm – taking 120 dogs with them. They'll be back March 15 to pick up the rest of the dogs, and the public hearing is tentatively scheduled for that date.

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