Dogs seized from Southern Paws Transport relocated

Southern Paws Transport director in court

NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- The director of a local animal rescue appeared in court Thursday after 13 dogs were seized by the City of North Little Rock.

Whitney Ransom was cited last week for operating an illegal shelter and possessing banned breeds in a warehouse in North Little Rock.

"In this case, the system worked," said Nathan Hamilton, an official from North Little Rock.

The city agreed to allow the 13 dogs to be moved from a warehouse operated by Southern Paws Transport to another rescue. 

"Government worked," said Hamilton.  "We found some dogs that were in pretty terrible condition.  We were able to find those dogs a good place to go, thanks to two non-profits working together."

All 13 dogs will be moved to Cynder Creek Animal Rescue, a facility in the county where the pit bulls can also be saved.

"Sometimes rescues do struggle, but the ultimate goal is to find a good quality forever home [for the pets].  That's the best thing we can do for them," said Karen Kelley with the Cyder Creek Animal Rescue. 

The city said it took a few days to arrange the deal, with all eyes were on getting the dogs out of the shelter, not on the citations given to Southern Paws director, Whitney Ransom.

Southern Paw's board is now split on whether or not Ransom should keep that position.

"From my perspective, what's going to be best for the dogs is for her to step down as the director of Southern Paws Transport," said Laurie Lanig, a board member of Southern Paws.

Laing said when Southern Paws began, their mission was not to pull dogs from shelters unless they had a rescue secured.  She said the board unsuccessfully put a moratorium on rescuing any dogs for 60 days.

"To date, dogs are still being brought in, without a rescue commitment possibly. And we still have a bunch of dogs here without rescue commitment," added Laing. 

Since the dogs were seized, the harassment and threats have gotten so bad for Ransom, her attorney asked the judge not to allow social media in the court.  The judge refused. 

Ransom's citations for operating an illegal shelter and possessing a banned breed have been moved to December.


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