Why do people hoard animals?
The reason is very simple. It is for emotional and mental gratification. The sense of achievement people get when they become the rescuer is far more fetching than trying to analyse the state in which the animal is. Some group of individuals who live alone, find comfort when living amongst a large number of animals. In short, the need to feel important and the need for attention often drive people to hoard animals.
This is a sickening reason for people to hoard animals resulting in exploitation and abuse. A couple in Texas, US, was charged with animal abuse after police found 19 dogs in their home contaminated with urine and faeces. Police officers and neighbours’ deemed this home uninhabitable. Even when people hoard animals for the purpose of protecting them, most of them unintentionally end up causing more harm.
What happens when you hoard animals?
When the animals overrun your home, you will find it difficult to take proper care of the animals and usually end up causing them distress and pain. You fail to provide proper sanitation, food and veterinary care and they become prone to skin diseases, infections, are wounded during fights with other animals and end up with fleas and parasites crawling all over them. Cats are involved in most of the animal hoarding cases and are among the worst due to the limited water consumption and high urine crystallisation.
A couple in Ottawa had called the humane society, asking for help with their cat population. Workers were able to find 37 cats. All the cats were unvaccinated including a nursing litter. The couple started off initially with only four cats. Then they took in a few strays and, soon, the cats were reproducing. The couple was spending $15 a day to feed the brood. They eventually decided the situation was unmanageable and called for help.
How does animal hoarding affect others around you?
When you have a home full of unclean animals and animal wastes, an asthmatic neighbour may not find it amusing when cat fur flies into his face when he opens his window. Every animal hoarders crib transforms into filthy, cramped, extremely crowded dumpster filled with flea, termites, worm infestations and deadly infections. This is not only cruel to the pets but also to the people living in the house because they can cause severe infections including pneumonia in children. Untamed and unvaccinated animals are a threat to visitors and the neighbours’. In 1985 in Broward County, Florida, Vikki Kittles’ neighbours had complained of bad odour and noise caused by the animals at her house. Vikki was charged with aggravated assault for pointing a gun at a neighbour whom she accused of harbouring her missing dog. Most people tolerate animal lovers, but everybody despises animal hoarders. Nobody wants the jungle book coming home!
How to care for animals without hoarding them?
- If you are concerned about the well-being of animals, you could volunteer with animal rescue organisations.
- You could help put up ads to find decent homes that would adopt a stray pet.
- Donate old items to animal shelter.
- Attend fundraiser events for helping animals.
Animals are faithful and love you unconditionally irrespective of how badly you treat them. But we should not make them prisoners of our love. Do not treat them as objects of your fascination, love them as companions.