63 cats surrendered by hoarder in South Carolina: now help is needed, especially for cats who tested positive for FeLV/FIV

Last weekend Orangeburg County, South Carolina officials responded to a tip about an unoccupied home on Honeysuckle drive. When Animal Control officers arrived they saw several cats looking out the windows and found the house structurally unstable with no one living there. The home was in such bad condition it was condemned by the County Building and Codes officer.

Cat rescued from hoarders home

Sixty-three cats and four dogs were found on the property. The homeowner was located and surrendered the cats to Orangeburg County Animal Control and Shelter. From what I’ve heard they were able to find homes for the dogs, but the shelter is struggling to find rescues to take in some of the healthier cats. Cage after cage occupied any clear space at the shelter, including the puppy room (which thankfully wasn’t full of puppies).

On Wednesday, the Charleston Animal Society mobile clinic arrived with a team of three veterinarians experienced in hoarding cases. Within thirty minutes of prep work, the first of the cats were being examined. Many are healthy, but many are suffering from tapeworms (caused by fleas in the home), upper respiratory problems and eye issues caused by high levels of ammonia in the home. All were examined, checked for microchips and tested for infectious diseases. Unfortunately, 10 cats tested positive for Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV) and at least one tested positive for Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV).

Mobile unit was used to examine 63 cats surrendered by hoarder

For the Love of a Paw, along with Aiken Humane Society and the Palmetto Animal League have already taken or plan to take 40+ cats from the Orangeburg shelter. Hopefully, those cats will soon have new forever homes. Homes where the homeowner doesn’t get in over their head and take on more cats than they can handle.

Chasity Avinger with For the Love of a Paw rescue reported they’re in desperate need of disposable cat litter boxes and small towels. If you would like to donate, contact Avinger at her law firm at 803-854-0115. Donations can also be sent to P.O. Box 1377, Santee, SC 29142, or through their Facebook page.

Just to show how well cat advocates band together, a cat lover in Texas donated $2,500 to the rescue effort and a local Food Lion grocery donated bags of litter from a local distribution center. A big shout out also goes to Tiger Mike, the owner of Lazy Creek, who is helping feed the cats.

Suzy’s Zoo has reached out to help the FeLV and FIV kitties, but no final arrangements have been made, so that’s another concern that needs addressing. The Orangeburg shelter is still in need of help, not only for these cats but for others already at their facility. If you can help in any way, from fostering to rescue to donating supplies, please contact the shelter at (803) 534-0045 and ask them what is needed at this time.

The cats aren’t up for adoption at this time, mainly due to health issues and socialization problems. The shelter is not taking in community cats at this time until the crisis is over. Updates will be posted to their Facebook page.

As for the hoarder, no names have been released because Orangeburg County Animal Control officers are gathering evidence to present to the solicitor for charges of animal cruelty and neglect.

If any of the rescues who have taken these cats into their rescue need help, leave a comment and where to send relief.

Elisa

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63 cats surrendered by hoarder in South Carolina: now help is needed, especially for cats who tested positive for FeLV/FIV — 6 Comments

  1. When pets are hoarded their general health becomes compromised by irresponsible so-called caregivers. I am sad to say it, but this scenario plays out far too often.
    Really it shouldn’t be allowed to happen in the first place. where are the objective and compassionate bystanders who could have spoken out sooner? Eva

  2. South Carolina, North Carolina, again and again, over and over I’ve heard one story after another of animal abuses there…

    • It still seems the Carolinas take the cake when it comes to abusing animals. …whether it’s hoarding or blatant cruelty.

      • And it will continue. There are laws on the books in SC to protect animals. Trouble is the court system absolutely refuses to enforce them. They hand out fines and work out plea deals. The abusers know this.

  3. I’m pretty sure neighbors, friends, relatives were aware of the mess. The smell.
    Lack of aggressive prosecution. You don’t cure a hoarder you have to force them into compliance and you can’t do that without some type of legal control. Prosecuting attorneys and judges treat animal abuse like some kind of annoyance. These hoarding cases aside from the misery for the animals cost the taxpayers and other animals in need have to wait while AC tries to sort this mess out. Hoarders don’t take their sick animals to the vet let alone get them S/N. Hoarders destroy homes they live often rentals or something that banks have to take a loss on when a solid home becomes a tear down. Hoarders spread fleas and disease to healthy animals that may come in contact with feces and other filth generated by a hoarder. As always the animals are the real victims but for some reason the hoarder gets the sympathy. Most never even get the bill for their debacle.

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