- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 2, 2017

The eight dogs and puppies found living in their own waste at the trash-laden Dakota Access protest camp last weekend weren’t the only pets left behind.

Volunteers with a local animal shelter are working with law enforcement to rescue more dogs after contractors finish using heavy machinery as part of the clean-up effort at the camp near Cannon Ball, North Dakota.

“There are still other animals at the protest site,” said Furry Friends Rockin’ Rescue in its latest post. “We are working with law enforcement to continue the rescue efforts.”

The Bismarck-based shelter said that authorities are “collaborating with us in the instance they are able to catch the scared animals.”

“We have to follow their procedures and guidelines, which means, we have to wait until the heavy machinery is completed with the clean up before we can get more,” said the rescue.

The dogs left at the Oceti Sakowin camp wound up with Furry Friends after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers evacuated the last of the protesters a week ago in order to hasten the cleanup of the environmentally sensitive site.

An estimated 48 million pounds of garbage has been removed so far in a race to clear the floodplain on federal land before the snowmelt washes the waste and debris into the Cannonball River and then the Missouri River.

The six puppies, found in “terrible conditions where they were living in their own urine and feces,” have been placed in foster care as they undergo a mandatory two-week quarantine process, according to the rescue.

“One of the adult dogs has been transferred to the care of another rescue in North Dakota and the other remains in quarantine at the Bismarck Animal Impound,” said Furry Friends.

The rescue has selected seven applicants to adopt the canines after receiving 45 applications.

“All of the canines were checked by a veterinarian from the local area, vaccinated, de-wormed, and given a bath before they went into their foster homes,” said the shelter. “They will be adopted out to local homes pending home visits.”

The rescue also thanked those who have sent in donations in the aftermath of press coverage about the puppies found at the encampment. It’s unclear whether the dogs were abandoned by protesters or strays that wandered into the encampment.

“We saw there was a need to rescue lost, abandoned, neglected, stray or surrenders in the area, and we did just that,” said Furry Friends. “It truly doesn’t matter to us how the animals got to be in that situation, but more so removing the animal from the hazardous situation.”

A Florida-based restoration company was hired on a $1 million federal contract to finish the clean-up project, which began in late January at the behest of the Standing Rock Sioux.

The tribe has tried to stop the $3.8 billion pipeline, which is nearly finished, over concerns about water quality, while Energy Transfer Partners has insisted the project is safe.

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