Loonie Farm, located in Ludowici Georgia, has recently been the subject of attention by the Georgia Department of Agriculture. After surprise inspections nearly a year ago, the farm received eight violations, ranging from improper sanitation and pest control to bookkeeping violations. Despite these violations, the state Department of Agriculture did not pull the Farm’s license and continued to officially sanction their animal rescue mission. Last week, however, local residents and officials uncovered a grisly scene when nearly all of the animals on the farm were found dead.
The initial discovery was made by Kim Hankerson, who was asked to look after the animals by the owner Christiane Judd. Judd has subsequently fled town. Upon Hankerson’s arrival at the farm she discovered that all the animals were dead. Animal remains were discovered scattered across the farm, in wheelbarrows, in locked cages, and in fields. In addition, authorities discovered two garbage bags filled with bones and neighbors claimed that at least one of the dogs on the farm was shot.
Hankerson, who belongs to Animal Havens of Hope, expressed confusion and outrage that the farm was not better supervised. The initial GDA inspection discovered several animals with alarmingly low bodyweights. Despite the apparent neglect, officials declined to revoke the farm’s license and reported that the Judd’s were making significant improvement in the treatment of their animals. Many locals are wondering how things got so bad so quickly. The GDA is planning an investigation which will hopefully shed light on the mistreatment of animals on officially licensed rescue farms.
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer