Owner of Orange County animal rescue speaks out after dogs taken


Dogs impounded from Orange Co. rescue group

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - The owner of an east Orange County animal rescue spoke to Eyewitness News a day after all of her animals were moved by Animal Services.

Thirty-two dogs were taken away from the property on Econlockhatchee Trail near Lake Underhill Road.

The owner of Faith, Hope and Love, Elizabeth Keiffer, told Channel 9's Racquel Asa she was in the process of getting more space when Orange County Animal Services stepped in.

"I'm pleading for somebody to not see this rescue as bad and to try and please, please, help -- not for me but for those dogs," Keiffer said.

Keiffer has trouble speaking. She just got out of the hospital after suffering her second stroke.

She said she was in the hospital Thursday when all the animals at her rescue were being moved from the house.

"Everything happened at once and the dogs are the ones that have to pay," Keiffer said.

She said Animal Services didn't know she was in the process of finding a bigger place for the dogs before someone called them.

She also said the eviction process started by the property owner had nothing to do with how she operated the rescue, it only concerned a shed the rescue built on the property to house the dogs.

"The building place I got it from did not tell me I had to have a permit," Keiffer said.

Keiffer said the dogs are still up for adoption at Animal Services.

As for the ones that can't be adopted, she said she has a week to find a new place so she can take them back.

"I need to place, and I need the help and it's hard, all of this, with my strokes," Keiffer said.

Keiffer said she's not going to give up on the dogs.

There are more than a dozen dogs up for adoption at Orange County Animal Services.

Keiffer said Friday that Jorge Valez, the man WFTV interviewed Thursday, is not her boyfriend. He helps with the rescue at the home on Econlockhatchee Trail.