Dear Dr. Thompson: Can you help me with a serious problem? I am witness to a family member who is a hoarder of animals. There are so many and some that are old with incontinence problems, that the home is littered with feces and smelling strongly of urine. This home obviously needs to be cleaned. But its owners need to know how to prevent the problem from recurring. Can you give me some direction as to organizing this home so that the pets can remain there, but the mess doesn’t repeat?
Unfortunately, you are dealing with a very complex situation that involves a mental health issue, animal cruelty, and a risk to public health. You did not give an estimate of how many animals are in the house, but I assume it is a significant number and there is no reasonable way for these pets to remain with this person
Most cases of animal hoarding start out well intentioned. There is a desire to help these animals, but as is the case with many mental illnesses, the behavior is taken to extremes. Often hoarders fail to realize their behavior is putting the health and welfare of the animals in jeopardy. This becomes a cruelty case since the presence of feces and urine throughout the environment put everyone in the house at risk for illness. The large numbers of animals in the house also create significant conflict between the animals for food and water. Many times these animals are malnourished and dehydrated..." More
This blog was created to keep you up-to-date on animal hoarding and large scale animal news and cruelty.
Because hoarding and OCD disorders often overlap, we will also list news and information related to these topics, and how these illness's affect the hoarder, their family and friends, but most of all the animals, that suffer... "alone in a crowded room".
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