News never stops and neither does cat hoarding. Two cats became 84 in two years. And they all lived in one filthy room. Think of the mental and physical health and welfare of these cats.
Yet again in new media we have another example of cat hoarding. And a particularly horrendous one which goes well beyond any rational behaviour or thought. It is very sad but for me that sadness is almost exclusively reserved for the cats because they are the victims of aberrant human behaviour.
Will any jurisdiction ever do anything about cat hoarding to try and squash it out of society? Do observers of the world of cats have to constantly come across a steady flow of cat hoarding stories year in and year out with no change to the status quo?
Cat hoarding like this is recognised as a mental health problem. It has to be as it is irrational behaviour. Cat hoarders believe that they are doing good while actually doing bad. They are blind to their actions and the consequences. Although the quantity of unwanted cats feeds the existence of people with cat hoarding tendencies.
If humankind is to ‘squash’ cat hoarding out of existence – and it is about time – we need to tackle it from two sides: treat mental health issues in people with general hoarding tendencies (anxiety issues?) and educate people on cat ownership to get rid of the underlying problem which is the creation of unwanted cats (sterilise cats).
Here we have an 84-year-old woman who was living in one room with 84 cats. The picture is shocking really. The cats must have been very stressed. Domestic cats have a desire for a home range (their place) which can extend to several acres and more depending on their gender. In one room they had no space at all that they could call their own. There must have been constant stress leading to the usual stress induced behaviours and health issues.
It took a relative of the cat hoarding woman to inform a non-profit called Feline Solutions Inc in York County to begin sorting out the problem.
Carol Molina of Feline Solutions Inc. said something which you hear all the time concerning cat hoarders: “In her mind, she loves them and doesn’t see a problem. It was her family who got her help.”
As I said, cat hoarders are blind to their mental health and cat welfare issues.
The other thing that you hear all the time on this topic is that the huge and unmanageable number of cats acquired by hoarders is due to uncontrolled breeding. The cats are unsterilised. They are allowed to procreate in a relatively safe environment but one which becomes unsafe because of constant inbreeding affecting health (inbreeding depression) and due to neglect from the cat hoarder and their inability to provide for the cats as their number makes that task beyond their means and abilities.
The 84-year-old woman started with two or three unsterilised cats in 2020. In a mere two years two cats became 84. Where would it have ended if it had not been stopped?
Molina said, “there were probably more than 100 cats, some of them died”.
For the rescue organisation it is a big task. They were only able to save 40 of the cats. Several cats were “painfully skinny”, and several were pregnant. I am surprised that less than half were saved. It seems to be a very low percentage especially as we have a photograph of the cats.
Molina said that “they were stacked on top of each other, it was pathetic”.
I am sorry but sometimes I also find the human race pathetic. Why can’t more be done to prevent cat hoarding? It is not only the steady stream of cat hoarding stories which gall me but the steady stream of unwanted cats that hoarders allow into the dirty and neglectful world that they have created.
I have sympathy for the hoarders and this woman, but they do harm. They abuse animals. They are part of the unwanted cat problem as they are an outlet for them until they are found out and a large percentage of the cats are euthanized.
P.S. Forever Love Rescue at the Kitty Corner and PAWS of Pa. and Heavenly Paws Animal Shelter and Loving Care Cat Rescue all assisted in the rescue. The elderly woman was grateful.
Theoretical max. procreation
A single breeding pair of domestic cats could lead to 65,536 cats in 5 years! This is a theoretical maximum, but it does highlight the ability of domestic cats to procreate in the interests of their survival. The problem is that the process is exponential. It doubles every time.
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