UPDATE: STATELINE (WIFR) – Dozens of cats rescued from a Stateline hoarder are now with foster homes and ready to go up for adoption. Some have already found new homes.
In mid-December, Paws Humane Society worked with several other rescue groups to take in a total of 130 cats from a local hoarder. There had been 150 living on one property. About half a dozen of the animals are healthy and available for adoption. A faster turnaround than what Paws volunteers had expected.
ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- A local animal rescue group is in the process of finding homes for dozens of cats rescued from a hoarder. Volunteers say in total, 150 animals were living in appalling conditions with little food or water.
PAWS Humane Society of Rockford was called in by the animals’ owner to help re-home some of the 150 cats; 40 are with PAWS foster families, 14 went to other Stateline rescue groups. Marilyn Pelkowski is a first time volunteer foster for PAWS. She’s owned cats for 20 years and said it was an easy decision to help these felines.
“We know how to take care of them and love them and there’s no reason not to,” says Pelkowski. She took one female cat home with her to Malta and has offered to take in a few more.
PAWS volunteers made two trips to the home; they say the cats living inside the home had too few litter boxes and not enough food, and the ones living outside didn’t have adequate shelter or water. The cats have been checked out by a vet, most had ear mites and problems with their ears and eyes from upper respiratory infections.
“We had to think hard if we could be the agency but we knew that no one else could save these cats and some were weeks away from dying,” says Sue Goland, a member of the PAWS board of directors.
“Even within the first few hours of being with us, many of them have opened up and become social and one started to get that spark back, many of them knew they were on their way to someplace better," says PAWS volunteer Kate Gill, she took 7 of the neglected cats.
PAWS volunteers say the owner has been cooperative in handing over the animals. The rescue group hopes after these first 50 cats find new homes, the owner will be persuaded to hand over more of the animals. No charges are pending for the owner at this time.