Know Before You Donate

Let’s Talk About the GoFundMes For the Iowa Dog Rescuer Charged With Cruelty and Torture

Tyson Lindsey Morrow GoFundMe

On February 1, disturbing photos emerged purporting to show dead dogs rotting in their kennels on a property up until recently rented by one Lindsey Morrow in Sandyville, IA. Morrow operated a group called Bully Breed Miracle Networking and Rescue, a registered 501c3 non-profit. The photos can be found here but we warn you, they are graphic and disturbing. The dead dogs, one of which was little more than a spine, were still wearing collars.

Morrow has been charged in the death of three dogs and the neglect of another 19 in her “care,” and she is currently in custody at the Warren County Jail. All told, she’s been hit with five counts of animal torture, five counts of animal neglect, second-degree theft, second-degree fraudulent practice and ongoing criminal conduct.

The Des Moines Register reports that court records show Morrow collected more than $1000 in donations through two GoFundMe campaigns, as well as donations of food, kennels and cash from individual people “to care for the dogs in her possession.” Both GoFundMe campaigns were marked “complete” leading up to her arrest and therefore didn’t show much info other than how much was collected, however we were able to salvage cached copies of each.

The Tyson’s Lifesaving Surgery GoFundMe requested $5000 for a dog pulled for Morrow from a “rural kill shelter” in North Carolina. She wrote:

We found Tyson in a rural kill shelter in NC. He had suffered a prolapse and the county generously paid for surgery. One look at that sweet face and we knew we had to save him. We had him pulled from the shelter and prepared him for the long journey to rescue in Iowa. Days later, seven dogs had to be euthanized for space at the shelter. We knew that with his medical issues Tyson had been pulled to safety just in time.

It raised $3375.

Another GoFundMe called Jax Saved From Death Row HW+ sought $500 and raised $525:

Jax was the last guy left off a kill list. The day his card was pulled for euthanasia, we were able to commit. It appears he has had a rough life up until now, which is pretty sad considering he is a young guy… His life is spared, but it is pretty apparent he will need some vet work. He will need all the basics and he also appears thin and has some sores on his back that will need to be addressed. We are only able to give Jax this chance thanks to caring, generous donors such as yourself. We just can’t do it alone. Please find it in your heart to help Jax on his journey to a wonderful new life. Our 501c3 is pending so all donations will be tax deductible (per our accountant and lawyer). Please look at that face and give from the heart. Because of people like you, dogs like Jax get a chance at a wonderful life. Thank you!

This case is, unfortunately, not an isolated one. A Facebook page called Rescue-Watch curates some of the worst offenders. For every reputable, responsible rescue group out there, there are dozens running “freelance” operations out of their homes with little to no oversight. It’s incredible that not a single person realized before it was too late that Morrow was one of them.

Bully Breed Miracle Networking and Rescue was described online as “a nonprofit, no-kill, volunteer dog rescue organization … dedicated to rescuing dogs left homeless for whatever reason (including) dogs in public shelters where they are at high risk of euthanasia due to pet overpopulation, dogs given up by their owners because of difficult circumstances, and those in danger of abuse or neglect.”

The surviving dogs are in the care of Animal Rescue League of Iowa. Donations toward their care can be made directly to ARL here, please mark your donation for the Sandyville Dogs.

Morrow is due back in court on February 20.