New owners of rescued Airedales working together in recovery

In August, Henderson County Animal Control rescued 26 Airedale Terriers from a pole barn.

Dorothea and Richard Conroy are charged with animal neglect and their second court appearance is set for Tuesday.

Officials say many of those dogs have been adopted, and their owners are working together to rehab the animals.

14 News is told that 19 of those 26 Airedales have been adopted, and many of them are quickly bouncing back. A new owner says the power of social media is easing the recovery effort.

"If you can scratch her, she will be your friend forever," Pat Funke said.

Funke, who lives on Evansville's west side, adopted one of the Airedales after spending time clipping them at the Henderson Animal Shelter.

"I spent five days helping socialize them. When they said I could bring one home, I had to take them," Funke said.

Funke named one Britta and says 19 of the Airedales have been adopted by people all across the country.

"Some are in Colorado, some are in Illinois, Pennsylvania," Funke said.

Funke says its a challenge to teach dogs like Britta how to trust humans again. But with the help of Facebook, those who have adopted the Airedales are working together to ease the process.

"17 of the 19 that were adopted have joined that Facebook page. There were so many problems that the dogs were experiencing. Things they were scared of, things that none of us had to deal with before," Funke said.

Funke says the owners come to the Facebook page for advice, encouragement, and progress reports. Although some are progressing faster than others, Funke says they're all over their illnesses and are in much better situations.

"The dogs have stolen everybody's heart. I will be there tomorrow. I'll be there every day for Britta and for all the others that came out of that sad situation," Funke said.

The Conroy's second court appearance is set for Wednesday.

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