Act of kindness endangers animals, owners

WOOD COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - By Bob Hallmark - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email

WOOD COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - Animal rescue workers say it is another case of animal hoarding. Almost 80 animals were rescued from a Wood County home. Friday morning at the 900 block of County Road 3420, Wood County sheriffs along with the Humane Society made the recovery.

Neighbors had complained for months about a foul stench and dozens of cats seen at the home.

"We've given warning after warning after warning," said Deputy Authur Judge, with the Wood County Sheriff's Office. "We've been dealing with this situation off and on at this residence since October of last year and the concerns had reached the point where something had to be done."

More than 20 cats were found outside and another 50 inside the double wide trailer, along with six dogs.

"She (the owner) really did feel that she was trying to help these cats," said Tammy Roberts, with the Humane Society of North Texas. "Usually, in these cases it tends to harm them more than help them."

Sheriff's deputies say the problem had become a neighborhood health concern.

"The ammonia levels are toxic not only to the animals but to the caregivers," said Judge.

The owner, as in many cases like this, pleaded for the cats to remain with her.

"They're afraid to take them to shelters - afraid they'll be euthanized," said Roberts.

Many of the animals were under weight and suffered respiratory and eye problems from high amounts of ammonia - a by-product of their own waste.

"[It] definitely effected the health of most of the cats," said Roberts. "The majority of the cats appear to be suffering from upper respiratory infections. The cats that were severely underweight could be underlying health issues."

The owners had tried to find homes for the animals and were caring for them as best as they could, but the problem was perpetuating. There were lots of kittens.

72 cats and six dogs were removed to be cared for.

A hearing has been set for June 7th to determine whether the animals will remain with the Humane Society of North Texas or their current location in Fort Worth.

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