Saturday, August 16, 2008

Cat Hoarders

I dropped by my local Humane Society (OSPCA) today to drop off some stuff for the yard sale they're holding on August 23rd. The large storage room was bursting at the seams, so it should raise lots of money to help run the centre.

While there, I visited the cats (of course) and found that the shelter had recently taken in 42 cats from the home of a "cat hoarder". I'd never heard that term before, and discovered it applies to anyone owning ten or more cats. I looked up "cat hoarder" on Google, and got over 5,000 hits, but didn't check any of them out because I was afraid there would be heart wrenching photos -- and I'd already seen enough.

The OSPCA had posted some pictures at the shelter depicting the living conditions the felines had to endure -- mounds of garbage strewn throughout, and filth coating every surface. The cats had never played with toys nor had any human interaction, yet they didn't turn away when I patted them. I'm hopeful that once adopted, the cats will respond to the love given by their new families.

You know, we joke about the 'crazy cat lady' , but having too many pets might overwhelm the average person -- no matter how much that person believes they love the animals. I suppose, instead of treating these people with humour, we should make sure the cats are receiving the appropriate care.


Georgie said...

From a sanitary factor alone, unless you have full-fledged "shelter" facilities to house an exceedingly large number of cats (and I'm talking big numbers here ) -- I'd say: "Leave it to the professionals."

If you love cats, and want to be around *lots* fo them, the solution is easy:

Volunteer your time and love at your local animal shelter.

They'll thank you for it.

Nice to have you back, Lynn. Your vacation sounds wonderful!

NuclearToast said...

Good to have you back, Lynn. And good to hear those hoarded cats are likely on their way to new homes where they're actually wanted.

Raggedy Angst said...

This is one reason I can't visit any sort of animal shelter. There simply isn't as much room in my condo as there is in my imagination or my heart, and I'd end up broken-hearted at not being able to take everyone of them home. Much as I desperately wish I could save them all, I'm sometimes challenged to give the two cats I have the attention they really deserve. You're such a great advocate for the critters--so glad to have you back!

Lynn Sinclair said...

Hi, Georgie. Yes, too many cats would mean non-stop kitty litter cleaning and vacuuming; there just wouldn't be enough time to play with them. I've signed up to volunteer at the shelter, but the volunteer coordinator wrote that they are in the process of revising their program, and are not accepting new volunteers at this time, but she would contact me when they were. Do you think that was just a nice way of telling me "no"?

And thanks, it's good to be back.

Lynn Sinclair said...

Thanks, NT. Let's hope those hoardees will find homes. There were some kittens (they'll go quick), plus many older cats.

Remember when you were a kid, and you'd close your eyes to wish for something that was pretty much beyond your reach? Yet you believed, so you'd wish with all your might. Wouldn't it be nice if that's all it took to have our wishes come true? Simply squeezing our fists and eyelids closed, and believing our wishes for a better world, people who'd love one another, and for all the animals to have caring homes an safe environments. Oh, to be young and trusting again.

Lynn Sinclair said...

It is tough, Raggs. I want to scoop them all up and reassure them that they will find good homes. I wish my cat, Meeko, had a buddy to hang with, but it's not to be. I'll bet your cats appreciate the love you give them.

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AuthorMomWithDogs said...

Some people just can't say no...

Lynn Sinclair said...

I have great potential to become a cat hoarder, Karen. Perhaps the only thing stopping me is that I can say "no".

jan said...

I've known known quite a few animal hoarders and they have been kind, if misdirected people. They just got into a situation they couldn't control because they were not totally rational people.

Lynn Sinclair said...

And once you have all those cats in your home, Jan, it would be pretty darn hard to give up even one.