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52 'Christmas Cats' Saved From Pasadena Hoarding Situation, Seek Forever Homes

A kitten stands on a weight scale with two medical professionals by the counter wearing black gloves.
One of the 52 kittens gets weighed.
(Courtesy of Pasadena Humane)
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Dozens of cats are in need of new homes this holiday season after being saved from a hoarding situation.

Pasadena Humane’s animal control officers rescued 52 cats and kittens last week from a residence in the city. Most of the animals were found inside the home but some were discovered underneath the property.

Dia DuVernet, CEO and President of Pasadena Humane, says they’re working with the city to help the previous owner. Most of the felines came in with upper respiratory issues and ear infections, which she says is common for cats housed in crowded and unsanitary conditions.

A white cat on a bed. The cat has scabs on its eye, and another black cat is behind them.
The cats are responding well to treatment.
(Courtesy of Pasadena Humane)
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Hoarding animals is a complicated issue that involves mental health, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The organization says that in a majority of cases, people with animal hoarding issues can believe living together is helpful.

But by hoarding, the owners usually aren’t able to provide minimum care, such as a safe home, food and clean environment. At least 250,000 animals nationwide are in hoarding conditions yearly but only 3,500 people who hoard them are found.

“It can be a devastating situation for both pets and people,” DuVernet said. “It is really something to care for 52 sick cats all at once. Our staff has been doing a remarkable job of handling this large influx.”

There are warning signs an owner may be struggling. They might isolate themselves and not know how many animals are at home. The animals could appear lethargic, or the house could have strong smells of ammonia from urine, according to the ASPCA.

The rescued felines are on the road to recovery and have been dubbed “the Christmas Cats.” The agency’s staff gave all 52 holiday-inspired names, such as Jolly, Merry, and Jingle. Pasadena Humane hopes to find the cats forever homes this Saturday, Dec. 18, from 10 a.m to 1 p.m.

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“We’re preparing for our Whisker Wonderland event,” said DuVernet. “We'll be offering a reduced adoption fee. All the cats will be vaccinated, microchipped and spayed or neutered before they go home to their new homes.”

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