St. Landry

Aug 19, 2014 4:43 PM by KATC

UPDATE: 60-70 birds euthanized after Lawtell man accused of hoarding 1,500 animals

The roughly 1,500 chickens, turkeys, peacocks and other birds taken from a home in Lawtell Friday have found foster homes, according to St. Landry Parish officials.

St. Landry Parish President Bill Fontenot said a veterinarian from Youngsville came to Opelousas over the weekend to assess the condition of the animals. Between 60 and 70 birds had to be euthanized, Fontenot said, while about 30 other birds died from the trauma of the transfer and living in deplorable conditions.

Donald Lafleur of Lawtell was arrested Friday for animal cruelty after investigators went to his home on Highway 752 in response to neighbors complaining about an awful smell coming from the area.

Once they arrived, animal control officers said they found more than 1,500 animals. Deputies said the inside of the home was littered with cages and fecal matter. Investigators said it is one of the worst cases of animal hoarding they have ever encountered.

The dogs recovered from the Lawtell home are being kept at the St. Landry Parish Animal Shelter, with most of them having to be nursed back to health, Fontenot said.

The animal shelter will accept applications for fostering the dogs, but Fontenot adds that "we kind of want to stay close to them right now to make sure they're O.K."

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