Under the authority of the Ellis County Sheriff’s Office, the SPCA of Texas seized four dogs and a donkey from a property in rural Ennis on Friday.

The donkey was in a pasture and the four dogs were confined in a trailer home that was filled 2 to 3 inches in feces, urine and debris, according to an SPCA spokesman, who said the owner did not appear to live on the property, but neighbors told SPCA of Texas investigators that someone came to visit every few days.

The dogs were in fair condition, but suffered from hair loss, eye discharge, inflamed skin and long nails. They did not appear to have access to food or water, according to information released about the seizure.

One slightly underweight donkey was found in a small pasture without access to food or shelter and there was very little grass in the pasture, according to the information, which noted he did have access to water.

The SPCA of Texas received an anonymous complaint regarding the donkey’s conditions and, upon visiting the property, an SPCA of Texas investigator found four dogs living alone in a trailer home. The SPCA of Texas investigator attempted to contact the owner several times without success.

Lt. Michael Tobey of the Ellis County Sheriff’s Office also visited the property and concurred with the SPCA of Texas that the animals needed to be removed from the property immediately. Under the authority of the Ellis County Sheriff’s Office, the SPCA of Texas seized the four dogs and donkey and will care for the animals until the custody hearing, according to the information.

The SPCA transported the seized animals to its Perry Animal Care Center in McKinney, where they will be examined by medical staff and cared for until the custody hearing.

The custody hearing will take place Feb. 25 in the court of Ellis County Justice of the Peace, Pct. 3, in Waxahachie. ??

If the SPCA of Texas is awarded custody, the animals would be individually evaluated for potential adoption or placement on a case-by-case basis, a spokesman said.

To help the SPCA of Texas fund future efforts like this and to support the SPCA of Texas’ other programs and services, visit http://www.spca.org/helptheanimals. To learn more about the SPCA of Texas, visit the website at http://www.spca.org.