CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - A local animal rescue says they're in a tough and troubling situation after dealing with two break-ins in two weeks time.
More than 10,000 pounds of pet food, along with medications and other critical supplies, is missing.
In between saving the souls of helpless animals, All Dogs Come From Heaven animal rescue gives out pet food to those who need a helping hand.
"We now do about 100,000 pounds of food a year, going to rural shelters in five states," said Margaret Coplen, the Vice President of the rescue. "We also supply bulk food in natural disasters."
The rescue also stocks and shares pet supplies that are donated from places like Pet Valu USA.
The organization's board members and leaders said they were shocked when they found that their storage warehouse, located in the Avondale area, had been burglarized two times.
The first time, Coplen said about 2,800 pounds of food had vanished.
"The amount of animals that are going to be deprived because of this is overwhelming and very sad," said Lisa Rabanus, a board member for the rescue and the rescue's attorney.
When the thieves returned for round two, Coplen said they essentially cleaned house.
"Between nine and 14,000 pounds of food [taken], all of our supplies have been taken, flea and tick medication, medicated shampoo, every crate, every dog bed is gone," said Coplen.
Coplen said the situation is disheartening because it only hurts the animals and prevents the rescue from providing help in emergency situations, like the flooding problems unfolding in Kentucky.
"A lot of these [Kentucky] shelters will be high and dry without any food to feed the animals," said Coplen.
Rescuers suspect there was more than one suspect involved and believe their motivation may have been moving the items to market.
"There are markets, not underground, they're out in the open street, but basically a street market for stolen goods," said Rabanus.
Right now, they are giving those involved a chance to return what was taken. If that does not happen, they said they will pursue criminal charges.
Rescuers said that the stolen bags of pet food should be specially marked, making them easier to identify.
They also said the warehouse building is now even more secure.
While they work to rebuild their stockpile, rescuers are taking donations.
Anyone who would like to donate cat food or dog food or other pet food can do so by dropping the items off at the rescue's adoption center at 1894 Ohio Pike in Amelia. Donations can also be dropped off at Milton's Tavern on the corner of Milton and Sycamore in downtown Cincinnati.