A RAID on an animal sanctuary that resulted in the death of 11 dogs “caused concern in Monmouthshire and beyond” a council has acknowledged. 

Monmouthshire County Council confirmed in September last year that 11 dogs were killed when it raided the Lost Souls Sanctuary in Rogiet and seized 82 dogs as it executed a warrant on August 15. 

At the authority’s January 18 meeting it was also stated efforts at rehoming some of the hounds still in the council’s care have been hit by the ban on American XL Bully dogs that came into force at the end of last year in response to a series of attacks involving the breed. 

Conservative councillor for Portskewett Lisa Dymock asked for an update from the council whose animal welfare officers had carried out the raid and seized the dogs. 

Supporters of the sanctuary staged a rally outside County Hall, in Usk, ahead of the council’s October meeting, following a protest outside the Senned in Cardiff, and also held a memorial with a celebrant in memory of the 11 dogs last month.

Cllr Dymock said: “I’m sure many colleagues have received lots of correspondence on what happened at Lost Souls Sanctuary in August. Some very concerning emails have come through.” 

Deputy leader Cllr Paul Griffiths said: “The issue has led to wide concern within the county and indeed beyond. I want to share as much information as I can however council will recognise an ongoing criminal investigation puts limits on the information I can share.” 

He said of the 71 dogs, taken into the council’s care following an order obtained at the magistrates’ court in October, its animal welfare team has been working with rescue organisations to assess their suitability and rehome them. 

He said: “The process has been slowed down by the recent ban on the XL Bully breed. Out of the 71 seized 40 have already been sucessfully rehomed and enquiries are still underway on the remaining 31. It’s hoped all remaining dogs will be rehomed in the coming weeks.” 

Cllr Dymock said she was “somewhat relieved” the remaining 71 hadn’t been destroyed and asked: “Is it likely the council is bringing prosecution through the courts?” 

Cllr Griffiths said he was unable to comment on the legal process while an investigation is ongoing due to “criminal procedure rules and legal due process” and that the council wouldn’t want him to “pre-determine this process”.