‘Rescuer’ accused of abandoning dogs – several found shot dead at her home

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A young woman who claims to have rescued over 100 dogs from Texas’ Fort Worth Animal Shelter, is accused of later abandoning the dogs. According to Thursday’s WBAP News, recently, multiple dogs were also found shot to death outside of the woman’s home in Arkansas.

The woman accused of abandoning the “rescued” dogs has been identified as Whitney Smither of Horatio, Arkansas. Smither’s boyfriend, Brian Moore, is accused of shooting the eight dogs which were found dead at her home. Moore is facing multiple counts of animal cruelty for the dogs’ deaths.

According to Dallas News, Moore claimed that he killed the dogs who had been rescued by Smither because they were infected with heartworms, and/or they posed a threat to humans or livestock; the dogs were apparently shot after Smither left Arkansas. Though Smither is listed as a suspect in the cruelty investigation, she has not yet been charged.

Dozens of dogs that Smither claimed to have rescued from the Texas animal shelter remain unaccounted for. On Wednesday, the rescue group Ark-La-Tex Animal Rescue, utilized social media in an effort to determine the fate of the dogs – the agency wrote:

We are reaching out to the rescue community, transporters, cross posters, fosters, volunteers, friends, and even family that may have any scrap of information that may tell us where any of the over 200 animals that came into the possession of Whitney Smither and Brian Moore between April 2016 and November 2016 might possibly be. Look through your old messages, texts, Facebook posts, receipts, and think hard, then contact me. Everything will be taken into consideration. We have to be the voices for the voiceless in this nightmare, because their one voice isn’t talking.

According to the WBAP report, Smither has “fled” to Indiana – charges against her are expected.

(Photo screenshot via Dallas News/Kerry Anechiarico)

32 replies
  1. maxiemom says:

    MONSTER!!!!!! Dogs can be treated for heartworms. They RECOVER. She obviously ‘adopted’ the dogs to do what was done to those 8 ,kill them and worse. I hope she’s one of those people who doesn’t want to surrender when they find her…. That boyfriend of hers needs some rapid fire justice, too.

    • EB says:

      It’s deplorable here in Texas. I have several Rescue Dogs I’m fostering. I even have two that another Foster dumped on me. The most beautiful Pitties I’ve ever seen. This has become the dumping and murder State. I’m loading up the animals soon and getting the Hell out of here.

  2. ellen cottone says:

    How does this happen?
    When every animal who goes thru the shelter system has a chip.I think every ward of the state, every shelter animal should have mandatory tracking device.
    Why not ? They should at least been vetted, spayed and evaluated.
    an investment has been made. How about giving jobs to people for monotoring shelter animals.
    Clearly we cant trust many humans, who are constantally getting their hands on helpless animals.
    I dont understand the lack of follow thru.

  3. Barkley's Mom says:

    This is horrible, all those dogs unaccounted for and the POS that just went out and shot them leaving their bodies to rot! Did he do this to get back at Smither for leaving him? After all it seems these dogs were shot after she left. I hope they get to the bottom of this mess, and I hope they get some justice for these poor dogs!

    • linda says:

      I’m also concerned for the 200 dogs that were in their care. I have this horrible thought that they may have sold several as bait dogs. It has been done. Some of these so-called “rescuers” are only in it for themselves. Periodic visits at the rescuer’s home should be done. It would hopefully weed out the good ones from the bad ones.

  4. Roselyne CORNETTE says:

    0n ne peut se fier à personne. Ils doivent tout les deux êtres condamnés au maximum, et pendant leur peine de prison, subir les mêmes horreurs qu’ils ont fait subir à ces pauvres animaux. Pas de pitié pour les assassins.

  5. Kay Cavallero says:

    Dear Hod…these people need to be checked outot just hand over a dog! 200 dogs and nobody checked into them ! Alarms should have been going off everywhere! So, so sad and totally could have been avoided ! ,

  6. Star Shelley says:

    Lord, this is scary! Lot of us continue to pledge to rescue all the time thinking the pups are safe. My lord hope they them both and prosecute to the full. Hope they get their in jail and get beat up by the jail mates.

  7. Serafina Raalekok says:

    K. don’t the shelters have records of who they let take dogs out of their facilities? I don’t mind sharing this with the rescue community for additional help in tracking these missing dogs down but would like, more information, and to hear that we’re working in tandem with the TX/DFW shelter system and law enforcement too.
    Did these people operate under the name of a rescue? If so, what was it? It’s good to have their names but there are often many aliases these people use to stay dodgey.
    This happens too often & I’d like to hear lawmaker and shelter working toward preventing this from happening in the future also.
    We, reliable, animal rescuers and advocates do our best to educate the public not to fund just any old fundraiser to help an animal, and to always do a little homework or check back on the FB thread for any warnings from people who do research and can detect red flags that con artists may give.
    Money is often at the root of these con rescuers. They collect it from fundraisers and then dump the animals. However, many are very easy to spot with just a minimal amount of checking on google.
    Here are a few articles on some things to know if you are donating to an unknown rescue. One thing this one says is incorrect, however, no rescue has to have non-profit status unless they list themselves as such. It is expensive to get this accredidation & there are some good ones without it. It does help to know a rescue has to report their earnings and be responsible that their expenditures are only going to the rescue, but it’s not foolproof either.
    If you just simply google the rescue’s name and nothing comes up, it’s a red flag. Good rescues will have some kind of social media site to list the status of the animals in their care, how to adopt them, how to help them (volunteer, donate,etc.). If they have none of these things then these are huge red flags!!

    • Donna says:

      FWACC FB page banned me from commenting because I check out rescues and warn people when the “rescues” don’t check out and dogs have disappeared. They claim I was “bad mouthing” good rescues that they had good working relationships with. ..when later on the shelter itself banned the same people I warned everyone about!! This shelter has ALWAYS been notoriously sketchy with knowingly “giving” bad rescues animals….just to keep their numbers “looking” good. The city government and MAYOR have turned a blind eye to all the bad stuff going on…including a vet who has butchered many a dog when routinely spaying and neutering leaving many animals sick or dead. If this latest incident doesn’t get this shelter overhauled then there is NO HOPE FOR FORT WORTH ANIMALSb

      • ellen cottone says:

        Thank you for speaking the truth.
        And Thank You for shouting it in the streets.
        Its People like you that change the world.

    • Mindi Neal says:

      To tell the truth of how easy it is at the Fort Worth animal control to get an animal . A year or two ago I volunteered to pick up and foster for 2 weeks , which turned into a month . I walked into the shelter , said I was there to pick up a certain dog for a rescue . There were no questions asked , no ID , they just handed her over to me ! Never a follow up or even a phone call ! I kept her a month , fell in love but I had gotten her to foster. I did the transport and was asked to take 5 other dogs , so I met for pick up on my way . I was told the dog I loved was going to live with a couple and she would drive to N. C. In the new owners lap . All the dogs I took there were put in cages going to N.C. To try to find homes . The whole thing sickened me . I still miss that little dog and regret I was ever involved ! She didn’t even like the people that ” wanted her . I’ll never forget the look of betrayal she gave me ! I still worry about her and her fate .

    • Mike says:

      You would think that perhaps a teenager who was handed…lets say the first 25 dogs was a”red flag for concern? Unless as Donna had stated above is true.

    • linda says:

      OMG such a sad story. Saw the video of the pit bull who used a wheelchair to get around (was one of the dead). How very sad. Angers me when I hear or read such abuse toward animals.

  8. Nina Stewart says:

    Too many people claiming to be rescues are NOT…they are not 501 (c) 3’s and are not being checked out on the IRS site to see if they are legit. I’d love to see a picture of the women in this story. We had one near Marshall that claimed to be a rescue and was not. She took in hundreds of dogs and when she was evicted from her property, they were many deceased dogs found. It was her and her boyfriend..they moved around a lot, taking in many innocent people with their claims of being a “rescue”.

  9. Deborah says:

    l have a pup came from Spring Texas that has heartworns and we are fighting for our pup to pull through it we named him Riley and he was only 10 pounds but now he is 13 pounds and gaining and he was not cheap to adopt and 3 high prices for treatments so for and he only had rabies only No puppy shots at all…..

  10. Jet says:

    She has a Facebook page. I searched posts by Whitney Smithers on her FB page. I bet you will
    Find those dogs that were shot somewhere among her pics.

  11. Lola Olive says:

    The so called “rescue” is as guilty as those two monsters. If not more. From what I have seen it’s a small group,yet a whooping 200 dogs were pulled withing 8 months???? Not even a huge,RESPONSIBLE and well established rescue can manage that. I can’t
    even imagine the horror and fear these poor,innocent,trusting souls had to go through because of greedy bastards. Ark-La-Tex Animal “Rescue” should be charged as well!!! They have the blood of 200 dogs on their hands.

  12. ellen cottone says:

    So many needy and desperate dogs , full of life. entering into these god dammed shelters.
    Up for grabs to any twisted persons. what can i do now to help?

  13. Cheah Agnes says:

    Rescue for her own good name and later on feel those dogs are burden to her and she abandoned them.
    Such a Irresponsible act and inhumane!!!


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