28 cats rescued from house

Sunday Times Newspapers

WYANDOTTE — The Downriver Central Animal Control was called to a house in the 1000-block of Cora Ave. after a family found 28 cats living inside the house.

The family came together to make funeral arrangements for a recently deceased, elderly woman, Animal Control Officer Aaron Bertera said, and to do a general cleaning of the house when the cats were found.

“They only noticed two cats in the house at first,” he said. “But as they cleaned out more of the house, more cats were revealed and didn’t know what to do with all the cats they found.”

He said it appeared the woman had “good intentions” by trying to take in stray cats and keep them out of shelters, but the problem arose after she took in more cats then she had could get fixed. The woman initially had about eight cats, Bertera said, but they began “rapidly multiplying” because not all of them weren’t fixed.

During the first day, Bertera said animal control officers searched the home and began calling rescues to care for, feed, and find homes for the cats they found. He said the house was in “good condition” for the amount of cats that were living there and the cats seemed “well taken care of.”

They went back the next day to begin removing the untamed felines, with the help of Brownstown Township animal control, but could take only 16 of the cats because they ran out of containers in which to transport them.

Bertera said eventually they were able to get all the cats, ranging in age from one-day-old kittens to a 22-year-old adult, out of the house. Animal control officers removed 28 cats from the house over the next week. None of the cats recovered required any immediate medical attention, but required vaccinations.

Some of the cats are a result of in-breeding, Bertera said, which can cause some health problems for them later. He said the DCAC called in a third-party person to evaluate the cats’ ability to socialize and prioritize their adoption to new owners.

“Some of the cats had basic socialization skills, but a lot of them were very skittish and weren’t socialized,” Bertera said. “They were very fearful when approached and don’t react the way a typical house cat would.”

One of the rescued cats just gave birth to seven kittens Tuesday, Bertera said, and the DCAC will adopt as many of the cats as possible. Anyone interested in adopting any of the cats can go to http://wacshelter.com to fill out an application and find out more information.

(Gabriel Goodwin can be reached at ggoodwin@bewickpublications.com.)