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City rescues cats from hoarder’s home

Boulder City Animal Control rescued more than 40 cats last week from an animal hoarding situation and none are expected to be euthanized, according to Animal Control Supervisor Ann Inabnitt.

Inabnitt said she and other Animal Control officers started recovering the animals from a mobile home Friday, Aug. 23. They had to wear hazmat suits and respirators because of the conditions inside the residence. Inabnitt said the conditions at the trailer were a health hazard and the property is a loss.

Currently, 43 cats, including six kittens, have been recovered and taken to the animal shelter, which has more than doubled its inventory.

“Six cats could be available for adoption this week and about 12 others could be adoptable soon,” Inabnitt said.

According to Inabnitt, the cats could have lingering effects from living in the extreme conditions at the mobile home.

“When you have more animals than you can take care of … they don’t get enough personal attention and become fearful of humans,” she said. “I have a good dozen like that.”

They will need long-term care with more attention and interaction with humans so they can learn to trust people. Inabnitt said many animals in that situation are euthanized, but that is not what she plans to do.

“They had a hard life and now you’re going to kill them? How about we try to save them?” she said. “Isn’t it our job to try? … I think we can save them. It’s just going to take some time.”

Inabnitt said she had to rinse many of the cats’ eyes because they were affected by the high levels of ammonia in the trailer from the urine that was everywhere. Some were also covered in excrement.

“I found a litter of kittens covered in diarrhea … . Their eyes were bad when I brought them in,” she said. “But after their faces were cleaned … they’re resting comfortably.”

“This weekend has been especially difficult for staff,” said Boulder City Police Chief Tim Shea. “There is an ongoing investigation surrounding the circumstances leading to this unfortunate incident.”

City officials are not releasing the location of the home or the owner’s identity at this time, according to a press release.

Three dogs were also recovered from the mobile home and they were taken in good condition to a breed-specific rescue organization, the release stated.

Inabnitt said the cats that haven’t been spayed or neutered will be and some are in surgery this week. The surgeries are being paid for with grant money from Maddie’s Fund and C5, Community Cat Coalition of Clark County.

The animal shelter is also in need of cages for this influx of cats. Inabnitt said some members of the community have already reached out and provided a dozen but she will need more. She also still has to check the feral cat traps nightly.

Inabnitt encourages the community to pay attention to their neighbors and ask questions to prevent more instances of animal hoarding. If anyone suspects another person is hoarding animals, they can contact Animal Control at 702-293-9283.

Contact reporter Celia Shortt Goodyear at cgoodyear@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow her on Twitter @csgoodyear.

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