SALISBURY (CBS/AP) – Right now, dozens of cute cats are searching for new homes for the holidays. Authorities say a Salisbury man was hoarding the animals. But the cats are in remarkably good shape and just need new homes.
“We set a record last week with intake, for the most cats we’ve ever taken in at once,” says Brit Fox-Hover, of the Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society.
It’s up to 67 cats now, sheltered at the Rescue Society’s facility. They came from a mobile home in Salisbury where Don owned them all. “I took care of ever one of them,” Don told us.
But when the Rescue Society went into his home they found a different story. “Unbelievably bad. The trailer was, it was full of cats. It was full of feces and urine. There was debris everywhere. The smell was overpowering,” says Fox-Hover.
Don tells us he didn’t have the money to spay or neuter the cats and they simply multiplied. “I was so afraid. It got so bad that I was afraid I’d be arrested,” he says.
He also says he’s cooperating with the authorities to hand over the cats they didn’t get. “We’re still working on getting those last few stragglers,” says Fox-Hover.
“I miss them. Every one of them,” Don says.
The cats got medical checkups as soon as they were brought to the shelter. “They were in actually relatively good shape for where they came from,” says Fox-Hover.
Liz Pease, the Executive Director of the Rescue Society, says the cats’ owner had been feeding them macaroni and cheese.
The older cats have been spayed and neutered, and they’re all receiving TLC and medical attention. “They all received their vaccines. Rabies vaccines. They were all tested for feline leukemia, and they were all negative,” Fox-Hover says.
And as early as Wednesday some of them will be ready for adoption. “They’re mostly beautiful, and friendly, and healthy for the most part so, really I think that mostly the cats can get a home by the holidays,” she adds.
The Salisbury police chief tells us he doesn’t plan to file any charges against the cat owner, saying there was no intent to commit a crime. The elderly man is receiving help getting his home back in shape.
For cat adoption information, contact the Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society: http://mrfrs.org/
(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)