I really don't believe animal hoarding and hoarding are the same things. Maybe I just WANT them to be different, but I do believe that.
Unfortunately, I would need to disagree with that. I have had to REALLY clamp down on myself and not adopt anymore cats because I know a: my vowels really would not be happy if there were other cats in the house, and b: I couldn't keep up with their care, both in my house, and veterinary.
But it is a REAL effort not to rescue every black cat in my local shelter.
And I provided a terrible home for the vowels the first 5 years, because of my hoarding. They could never run in a straight line, for instance, and O was always getting ear infections. Plus, because I never allowed anyone into my house, my two little recovering ferals are terrified of anyone else who comes into my house now. I joke that my friends think I really only have two black mechanical tails that are activated by the opening of the front door, and that just slide up the stairs.
But really, it is sad that they are afraid of people. I mean, *part* of that was because they were very sick when I got them, and they had to go to the Vet a lot, but mostly it is because they never had the opportunity to interact with anyone but me.
I do take them to the Vet every year for their Annual -- I would never miss that. I don't have pet insurance anymore because it is more cost-effective to save the money, for me. Or use my home equity line -- pet insurance is [bold]expensive[/bold]!
Last Edit: Dec 29, 2009 2:24:32 GMT -5 by lettinggo
our spca will not even take a cat in unless they catch them-- they just have no room and do not do not want to adopt more out-- so our option for a hurt stray is a kind lady who puts them down and only asks for the money for the meds or to take them to the vet who charges a hundred dollars--- I think we have to think beyond just seeing that an animal lives-- if it is running wild with no home or loved ones and no hope of being tamed then letting them be put down is a kindness - most animals who have lived wild cannot be tamed to be safe again- Our town has a good solid by-law which does stop a lot of hoarding- I would love to have a pet but I know I cannot take care of one in a safe and healthy manner now- and so out of love I do not have a pet now- we need to think of the animals feelings first and put ours second-- and it is sad to know that animals must be put down and we need to encourage others to neutor the pets-- yes- it costs money but that money should be consider before a pet comes into the home- we have birth control for humans but we don't want to help our animal friends - unfortunately I know a person who lets her 17 and 20 year old daughters take kittens home to love?? but never spades them and then lets them run wild and get lost when they become cats- I have offered to spade these pets that come and go - but she says if I am willing to do that I should give her money--- no way will I do that- I will go over and pay the vet tho but so far kitties just come and go - I have talked to spca etc but I cannot prove this action --(sad sigh) one pet is too many if a person can not or does not take care- they depend on us for their safey and health and cleanliness and food-- I wish all pets could talk- eh?? hugs Meme who is happy to see this thread
It does not matter how slowly you go, so long as you do not stop."
I know taking animals to a county shelter is a wrenching decision, but it's better than letting a dog or cat starve, freeze, die in a fight--or of blood loss or infection days later--or get hit by a car. Some places have free/low cost spay and neuter programs and no-kill shelters, but many don't. Humane euthanasia is a lousy choice, but sometimes it's the best one you can make.
One day at a time. Make a change. If you fail, make the same change again tomorrow. --Sister Mary Martha
Inch by inch, it's a cinch. By the yard, it's hard.
A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort---Herm Albright
About the [feral] cats in the yard: if you don't want to call a shelter, you might consider trying to participate in a trap/neuter/release program. Basically, the idea is this: when people try to deal with the problem of feral cats by rounding them up and killing them, or even just taking them away, that doesn't work well: new cats just come in and take over their territory. By trapping them, spaying or neutering them, and releasing them, they keep their territory, but they are spayed/neutered, so they don't multiply.
When they spay or neuter cats, they also take off a tip of one ear; this way, people will know that this cat has already been spayed or neutered, and won't put it through the trauma of being re-captured and (for females) put through surgery unnecessarily. This is done while the cat is under anaesthesia for the spaying/neutering, so it's not painful; in any case, having some stranger open up one's abdomen only to discover that one has already been spayed is a whole lot worse than this could ever be. There are low-cost spay/neuter clinics, and people who will help to make this possible even if it doesn't seem to be.
Alley Cat Allies has good information about dealing with feral cats here:
For those who have the stomach to watch, there is a series on animal hoarding on the Animal Planet channel on cable. It is very similar in style to the A&E series Hoarders.
I was able to watch most of one episode the other day. It featured two situations, each with about 80-100 cats. One an older lady with depression. The second a younger couple who wanted to have a baby. Each situation was of course out of control. Neither home seemed to have any other hoarding behavior going on.
I generally don't watch shows with animal hoarding, so I don't know if this is common, but even though the people loved their animals and they were sad to see them go, in both situations, the people seemed extremely relieved and happy when all but 2 or 3 of the animals actually had been removed.
The most we have ever had is 3 cats. I used to think I could end up with 70 of them in my later years, but I no longer think so. Too expensive and too much work.
Last Edit: Aug 18, 2011 9:17:13 GMT -5 by betsymarie
"I want to be an outrageous old woman who never gets called an Old Lady. I want to get sharp-edged and earth-colored, till I fade away from pure joy." ~ unknown
137 garbage cans of 'stuff' gone - recycled, donated, trashed.
Hi there, Does anyone know of any help we can get for an animal hoarder AND stuff hoarder.... serious case, in fact I am quite certain my mother is at the most severe end of the scale. We are in Queensland Australia.
Humane euthanasia is a lousy choice, but sometimes it's the best one you can make.
I volunteer for a cat rescue org. here and they do trap neuter/spay and release. There are people who go and feed the feral colonies. The SPCA does a spay/neuter day for the cat rescues with vets/techs who volunteer. Our cat rescue org. does fundraising for food meds etc.
I'm hoping that some of our friends in Oz can make a few suggestions to hr. What a heartbreaking problem! It is going to take careful handling to keep from making the hoarding problems worse.
At this point, psychiatrists seem to feel that the two are two separate conditions.
That said, I would look for a psychiatrist dealing with OCD behavior, as seems the be closest diagnosis with help readily available. Hopefully, the Australians on the board will be able to recommend someone for your mother.
Post by positivelyflying on Mar 31, 2013 21:50:12 GMT -5
Hr, I'm in Australia, but I'm in Melbourne. There is a wonderful cat rescue lady in Victoria who runs Ingrid's Haven, a no kill shelter. She may not be able to help, but might know who you could contact. Have a look at Ingridshaven.net.au for her contact details. Ingrid is an amazing woman and very compassionate towards the animals in her care. I hope she is able to help direct you to someone in Queensland.
Well, I must be a rescue hoarder. That was too long for me to read all of it, but I have about 20 cats that were sent to me from the shelter and an organization that traps and neuters feral cats. They are outside cats. I live on 50 acres with no near neighbors and lots of land around me. The shelter provides the food and the veterinary care. I don't concern myself too much though with whether or not I am a "hoarder"...because the animals are all well provided for. All of my animals...horses, donkeys, dogs...except for my fish...and two of my chickens...were someone else's throw aways or came from abusive situations. If you came here and it wasn't feeding time, you wouldn't know there are that many cats here. Some will be sleeping in the barns, a few may be on the porch...it is only at feeding time that they seem to come out of the woodwork.
Maybe I qualify as a "sociopath" too, because I prefer the company of animals to most people. At my age, I am hesitant to take on any more, because I want to be able to out live them. Three of my horses are old though....one is in her 20's and two are in their 30's. I am considering getting another riding horse or mule. Everyone tells me I am too old and I should "slow down"...but I think I need to speed up. If I don't have something to look forward to, why bother living? I can sit in a rocking chair when I get to the nursing home.
Post by CourageouslyLion SeeksSerenity on Apr 1, 2013 21:56:23 GMT -5
Ellen, I read your other thread showing photos of your animals and the details of the care you provide for them. The area you have for the cats is contained, and clean, with room to run, and they are all spayed/neutered. You are caring for injured wild animals and releasing them to the wild when they are able to handle it. And you have a legitimate shelter that you check in with, that pays for your food and supplies.
Based on what you've said, you're not an animal hoarder.
An animal hoarder has more animals than they can give appropriate care to. The number isn't the issue.
Whether it's 1 animal or 100 animals, the issue is whether you have the time, energy, skills, finances, logistics, and energy to care for the animals appropriately.
The following is to the "generic you" (anyone reading):
When you start becoming *deluded* that you are the ONLY person, and NOBODY else can EVER care for the animals the way you do, and you RESIST rehoming pets and/or RESIST safe release of wild animals .... then you have to seek psychological help.
Or if the animals' health is starting to suffer, due to overcrowding, or lack of money, or lack of medical care, then that's when you have to find someone to help you place the animals elsewhere.
The big thing you need to watch for is ... do you have a plan for the animals if *YOU* become disabled or injured or sick?
To ellen You're not a sociopath. A sociopath is someone with zero empathy. You might have social phobia which is a fancy way of saying you're awkward around people.
ellen, I agree with Lion 100%. Your care is exemplary. The animals you own are happy and healthy. Their social interaction is good, and that includes the feral cats and possums. As Lion says, an animal hoarder isn't someone defined just by numbers, but by the care and health of the animals involved. Yours couldn't be in better hands.
I doubt severely that you would do ANYTHING to another human being without worrying about their needs and health to fulfill your own desires, which is what a sociopath would do. Uncomfortable with people, yes. Sociopath, no.