PARADISE TOWNSHIP, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – Dozens of cats and kittens are crying for help after a classic case of animal hoarding. The owner of sixty-plus cats is sharing her story with Eyewitness News, and explaining how her love for animals came down to this.
The 67-year-old woman is sleeping in a tent after her home was foreclosed and county officials padlocked the doors. The cats were locked inside the home with no way to escape, until now.
“Oh, it’s heartbreaking. Heartbreaking,” says Sandra Wenner.
Sandra Wenner’s cats are her life.
She adds, “they’re like family.”
But now, one by one, they’re being taken away from her Paradise Township home.There’s more than 60 cats.
“It’s not pretty in there,” says Gerri Papillion, owner of Camp Papillion Animal Shelter.
At first, Sandra had only a few. She thought she was doing a good thing by rescuing them. But overtime, she couldn’t afford the cats financially and their population spiraled out of control.
“I feel bad about it,” Wenner admits.
Animal shelter volunteers are climbing through windows trying to catch them all.
“If everyone just spayed or neutered or trap-neuter-released one cat in their local area or neighborhood, it really makes an impact,” says Nancy Reese of NEPA Animal Adoption Network.
Medical bills for these guys are going to cost about $7,000. Rescuers now need the communities support.
“We need fosters, adoptives. We’re going to need funds, donations. Because on a bunch of these [cats] we’ve seen scrapes and marks,” Papillion explains.
Camp Papillion, NEPA Animal Adoption Network, AWSOM, and other non-profits are now caring for the cats and a dog named Dixie.
Sandra sits by watching, feeling empty and helpless.
She says, “it’s just really sad.”
Animal groups stress it’s important to have your pets fixed. If you have a potential hoarding situation, contact the SPCA or local organizations that can help before the issue gets worse.
If you’d like to help cover the costs of these cats or give one a ‘furever’ home: http://nepaaan.weebly.com/events.html