SALISBURY, N.C. (WJZY) — Dozens of animals including goats, snakes, a turtle, and a bearded dragon were seized from a moldy home in Rowan County last week, the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office said Monday.
Deputies launched an investigation on Oct. 21 regarding a home on 201 Morlan Park Road after a malnourished dog was located by someone near the residence. A microchip led members of the Rowan County Animal Shelter to the address on Morlan Park Road, according to the sheriff’s report.
As the investigation continued, a warrant was served last Thursday around 9 a.m. at the home where officials said Justin Smith and Madyson Clontz resided. Deputies said rat feces was found inside the moldy home and numerous animals in poor condition were found around the property.
The sheriff’s office said 45 animals were seized including snakes, pigs, ducks, chickens, goats, cats, dogs, a turtle, a fish, and a bearded dragon, which is defined as a reptile coming from the lizard species.
Both suspects were charged with 45 counts of animal cruelty.
In addition, the two were charged with three counts of misdemeanor child abuse.