Abuse allegations at Greyhound adoption group

Posted at 4:41 PM, Feb 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-08 15:44:49-05

A former volunteer with a greyhound adoption group is calling on its president to improve conditions at the shelter.

Dawn Brown volunteered with the group 45 mile per hour couch potato between mid-December and mid-January. The organization takes in greyhounds once they are retired from running in tracks around Florida.

After a few days on the job, Brown knew something was wrong.

"I started looking around and seeing things I shouldn't have seen.  Every cage had either urine, poop or feces in it."

The shelter used to be run out of a plaza on Rail Head Boulevard south of Bonita Springs.  Brown and other volunteers say they saw dogs stacked in their crates, not being let out for several days.

"We had two dogs that had crushed legs, which I didn't know that at the time, I just thought they were broken."

Brown and one other former volunteer took out sworn statements with the Collier County Sheriff's Office, detailing the abuses.  She urged owner Darlene Izzo to improve conditions at the shelter.

"We told Darlene everyday, several times a day, multiple volunteers and nothing happened."

Fox-4 visited Izzo's home for comment Saturday.  No one was there to answer the door, although we noticed the TV was on through one of the windows.  There was also a greyhound inside.

"We've raised all these concerns to the authorities," said Brown.  "We brought them pictures, evidence, vet records, showing that the injuries happened months ago and they weren't taken care of."

Brown says the Division of Animal Services told her it would take 6 weeks to finish its investigation.  Meantime, several of the greyhounds that used to be in Izzo's shelter are being fostered by groups or individuals.  

Anyone who wants to help can call 239-985-9035.