Portage County: 146 dead dogs found at home

The Portage Animal Protective League’s Humane Investigations Department found the dogs after executing a search warrant last week.

Ben Axelrod, Neil Fischer, Dave DeNatale

3:07PM EDT June 19, 2023

7:15AM EDT June 20, 2023

MANTUA, Ohio — A search warrant executed by the Portage Animal Protective League’s Humane Investigations Department last week resulted in 146 dead dogs being found at a house in Mantua.

“The state of that house and everything that was in it was just, there’s not even words to describe it. It was just horrendous,” neighbor Jon Collier told 3News.

Per the Protective League, 146 dead dogs were found in various stages of decay, with many of them confined in their crates. No dogs were found alive at the residence.

The search warrant was executed after the Protective League received a tip regarding a pending animal cruelty charge against the home owner in another jurisdiction. According to a release, the homeowner is a founding operator of Canine Lifeline, Inc., a nonprofit animal rescue.

According to an IRS 990 form from 2021, Barbara Wible is the president of Canine Lifeline, Inc. County records indicate she is the owner of the decrepit home.

Collier says he hasn’t heard much from his neighbor in the last six to eight months.

“She just left. Not a care in the world. I don’t know who could do that or why she would do that, but just to leave them and not even have food or water,” he added.

Necropsies (animal autopsies) will be performed in order to determine the dogs’ causes of death and an ongoing investigation of the remains. Any body with information regarding this investigation is asked to contact the Humane Agent, Holly Ebner at [email protected].

Late Monday afternoon, Canine Lifeline, Inc. wrote a long post on Facebook expressing shock at the revelations discovered at Wible’s house. The nonprofit added that Wible was hospitalized on June 2 after having found her collapsed at home. A subsequent investigation revealed “overwhelming evidence of ongoing fatal animal neglect in both her current Parma residence as well as her former home in Mantua.”

The surviving dogs found at Wible’s Parma residence were taken to Parma Animal Shelter, who have been providing care until good homes can be found for the canines.

Like the general public, volunteers of the non-profit animal rescue organization Canine Lifeline have been shocked,…

Posted by Canine Lifeline, Inc. on Monday, June 19, 2023

3News has reached out to the Mantua Police Department and the Portage County Sheriff’s Office, but have not heard back. Meanwhile, search warrant papers hang on the front door of the house while all of the kennels sit outside.

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