INDIANAPOLIS – A baby camel, donkeys and even a peacock were all seized by Indianapolis Animal Care and Control officers this week.
Authorities also rescued horses, sheep, chickens and some pygmy goats from their east side home on Washington Street.
The case started with a complaint last month about the health of one donkey. Officers say they found a donkey with a bridle embedded in its nose.
After a court hearing, officers were ordered to take the animals since the home was not zoned for livestock.
“I was overwhelmed with everything going on, it was like my children were being taken away from me,” said owner George Whirley, who acquired the animals for a religious animal ministry that featured a petting zoo and nativity scene.
“They were well taken care of,” said Whirley. “I don’t know how we recover from this, but our plan is to fight this and recover from it.”
But authorities told FOX59 the animals simply don’t belong.
“Camels are really not your average backyard pet, they require some special care,” said Dawn Contos of Animal Care & Control. “We were called here in March because two of the donkeys seemed to be in rough condition… when we went to court the judge also mentioned none of these animals should be living on the east side of Indianapolis and she ordered them back to us.”
Officers say they found one donkey with a bridle embedded in its nose, but they said the other animals seemed to be in good condition.