ONEIDA COUNTY, Idaho - The Oneida County sheriff said the 63 pit bulls recovered from last week's triple murder likely fed on other dogs.
The animals come from a dog-fighting compound and marijuana grow operation near Holbrook. Three people were shot to death there Thursday.
"Occasionally they will grind up the meat of a dog that dies and feed to the other dogs," said Sheriff Jeff Semrad in an email to Local News 8. "We found a dead dog in the freezer and a grinder nearby."
The Idaho Humane Society said Tuesday that the pit bulls need a lot of medical help.
The Pocatello Animal Shelter said it learned Wednesday that one pit bull died while at the Idaho Humane Society shelter in Boise.
One died before the animal shelter arrived at the home on Monday, and one more had to be euthanized at the shelter later that night.
The IHS said said it found the dogs to be "in very poor body condition." Most of the dogs are underweight and suffering from malnutrition. Many of them have open cuts and extensive scarring from old wounds and have skin, eye, and ear ailments resulting from neglect of their basic care. A few dogs have old injuries of broken bones that were left untreated.
Despite their obvious neglect and poor treatment, the IHS said it found the majority of the dogs to be friendly and accepting of handling by people. Further behavioral evaluations will be completed once the dogs' more pressing medical needs have been addressed, it said in a news release.
The IHS is not yet able to accept offers of hands-on assistance for these dogs. Donations for the dogs' care, feeding and veterinary expenses are welcome and can be made at the IHS website at www.idahohumanesociety.org. At this time, the IHS is not seeking foster homes for these dogs and there is no timeline available for when any of the dogs will be available for adoptive homes, but the shelter will make the public aware when any of the dogs may be ready for adoption through the media and the IHS website.
The two children, one 2 years old and the other 2 months old, found near one of the bodies are safe and with family, the Oneida County Sheriff's Office said. The baby was found under the arm of her mother, Yavette Chivon Carter, one of the victims, who was protecting her when she died.
The other murder victims were Brent L. Christensen and Trent Jon Christensen. Although autopsies on the bodies have been completed, the results aren't being released to the public.
Eleven different law enforcement agencies are helping investigate the murders.
The sheriff's office is looking for the driver of a red semi-tractor that has been seen at the home this past week. It is bob-tailed and wasn't pulling a trailer. The driver is not a suspect, but may have information for investigators.
In addition, the sheriff's office is asking anyone who may have attended the Easter party at the home on Sunday, March 31, to contact it at (208) 766-2251.