Animal Care Services inundated with calls amid freezing temperatures

God’s Dogs Rescue in need of donations, fosters

SAN ANTONIO – As temperatures drop, the number of calls regarding animal neglect or abuse cases has increased.

On Tuesday, Animal Care Services responded to an animal rescue case involving 11 dogs found outside chained without access to shelter from the freezing temperatures.

ACS Special Operations manager Lt. Bethany Snowden said cruelty investigators are constantly busy and are handed new cases daily. She said they’ve had 317 cases of neglect just this week alone.

During normal weather conditions, they respond to almost 100 calls daily.

“Everybody is out in the field today to try to get as many of those calls knocked down, but on days like this, we do get overwhelmed with those numbers,” said Snowden.

Another rescue organization southwest of San Antonio in Von Ormy is also experiencing a high volume of calls this week.

God’s Dogs Rescue CEO Julianne Marchbanks said it’s more than just neglect cases adding to the problem.

We’re always overwhelmed, and it’s been worse the last year and a half. A lot of people wanting to turn in their dogs or sending the dogs back that they’ve adopted from us -- it’s been really hard,” Marchbanks said.

At the God’s Dogs primary location, there are about 180 dogs who have either been abused, abandoned, or neglected. They have over 600 dogs in their care as a rescue.

Marchbanks says the number of dogs needing help is a problem here in Texas.

“Texas is number two in the number of strays and euthanized animals in the United States. So, yes, it is fairly unique to Texas,” said Marchbanks.

She said several factors contribute to this widespread problem, mainly the lack of empathy.

“We do have an epidemic. It’s a lack of spay and neuter and a lack of being responsible for the animals that belong to you,” Marchbanks said.

Both organizations urge the community to help by either fostering or adopting.

God’s Dogs Rescue is currently in major need of winter items to help keep the dogs warm. If you would like to help by fostering, adopting, or donating items visit

To report a suspected animal abuse or neglect case, call the City of San Antonio’s customer service hotline at 311.


ASC rescues 11 dogs chained outside in freezing temperatures

Bring your pets inside during cold winter weather

About the Authors

Jonathan Cotto is a reporter for KSAT’s Good Morning San Antonio. He’s a bilingual award-winning news reporter and he joined KSAT in 2021. Before coming to San Antonio, Cotto was reporting along the U.S.-Mexico border in South Texas. He’s a veteran of the United States Navy.

Adam Barraza is a photojournalist at KSAT 12 and an El Paso native. He interned at KVIA, the local ABC affiliate, while still in high school. He then moved to San Antonio and, after earning a degree from San Antonio College and the University of the Incarnate Word, started working in news. He’s also a diehard Dodgers fan and an avid sneakerhead.

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