Nearly 1,000 animals rescued after being left inside box truck in Fresno County

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Animal services found 955 birds and small animals in the back of a moving truck in Fresno County, and 18 died because of triple digit heat. (KFSN)

Nearly 1,000 pets were found in the back of a moving truck in Fresno County, and 18 of them died because of triple digit heat.

Fresno Humane Animal Services made the discovery Friday. One thousand animals is about the same size as an entire pet store, and it is hard to believe in weather like this, someone would leave animals inside a vehicle with no air running inside.

Sitting in crates, one-by-one, are dozens of animals who were just rescued from the back of a moving truck in triple digit weather.

"It turned out to be 955 small animals and birds," Brenda Mitchell with animal services said.

And they were all trapped for hours with no water and no ventilation.

"It was just heartbreaking," Mitchell said.
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Animal services found 955 birds and small animals in the back of a moving truck in Fresno County, and 18 died because of triple digit heat.



Mitchell says one of their officers got the call at around 3 p.m. after people in a Fresno County neighborhood reported the smell of something dead.

"When he got out there, he discovered this and he was just panicked," she explained.

Inside were countless birds, rabbits, guinea pigs and three little piglets.

"And it was 107 degrees at the front part of the truck, so the further, you'd go back and they were just stacked in there tight," Mitchell said. "It was probably tighter as you went back."

Mitchell's team was called out to help, and she says this is likely the result of animals being sold.

"Generally speaking this variety of animals at these ages in this quantity is for the purpose of sales," she explained.

Action News confronted the man who lives here at the home to confirm if that is, in fact, true, but he denied knowing anything about it, even stating he is a renter and that the truck does not belong to him.

Now volunteers are working to help these animals recover by placing them in wading pools with food and water, and because this was all unexpected, they are in need of the public's help.

"While it's a tremendous amount of work, we'd much rather be doing this than them out there suffering," Mitchell said.

As for the person linked to the moving truck, no charges have been filed, but the humane society says it is still an active and ongoing investigation.

Fresno Humane Animal Services also says it is unclear why the animals were in the back of the moving truck and where they were going but as the temperature continues to rise, they just want to remind people not to leave animals of any kind without food, water, and air.

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