Manitowoc County Health Department Director James Blaha vividly remembers walking into the home of one of the worst animal hoarders he has ever encountered and seeing dozens of cats.
“They just used the rug as a bathroom,” he said. “You’d go in the house and it was, ‘Oh my God.’”
The health department worked with the rural Manitowoc County family to help them clean up their residence two years ago. But as winter came the cats were allowed in the house more and more.
“They can’t get rid of them,” Blaha said of animal hoarders. “There were even mummies of dead animals in there that they didn’t know about.”
Blaha, who has dealt with about 20 animal hoarding cases — mostly involving cats — during his 15 years with the city of Manitowoc and 17 with the county health department, said it’s the worst kind of hoarding.
“You have to deal with the feces and high ammonia smells, which in not healthy for you,” he said.
Having many animals in a small, enclosed space often will lead to inbreeding and diseases, according to Blaha.
“It’s just not good for the animals,” he said..." More