BELMONT COUNTY, Ohio (WTRF) —
After cats, dogs, chickens and a donkey were discovered in a Bellaire, Ohio hoarding situation last week, hoarding is again in the spotlight.
Hoarders’ intentions are not cruel.
Belmont County animal rescue professionals say that while the animals are often suffering, that was almost never the intent of the owners.
Strangely, the owners often started out trying to help the animals.
But at some point, they gathered too many, and became overwhelmed with the work and expense involved.
They really have good intentions but when they can’t care for the animals, they can’t get the vet care, they can’t get the place cleaned up, they can’t keep it sanitary for the animals, that’s when you end up with problems. When you have 23 cats, one gets a respiratory infection, all of them do. The best thing to help you can do is actually get them back out into homes that are not overcrowded.
Julie Larish, Humane Agent, Belmont County Hoof & Paw
She says there are quite a few rescues and humane organizations in this area that can step up and accept animals, get them good care and re-home them.
She says the longer an animal remains in a hoarding situation without vet care, the more expensive it will be to get its issues addressed, if it’s even possible.
She urges hoarders to ask for help before it’s too late.