October 10, 2019 – Brandywine Valley SPCA (BVSPCA) pulled 87 pets from a home in Phoenixville after code enforcement officials deemed the house unfit for human occupancy. The animals included 85 live cats, the remains of one cat, and one live dog for a total of 86 surviving animals.
The animals were removed from the home by BVSPCA Animal Protective Services officers over the course of two days. They were transferred into the care of the BVSPCA West Chester Campus. The animals were living in deplorable conditions, including several layers of feces covering the floor. The animals range in condition from good to poor.
The dog, who the BVSPCA named Sunshine, is a mixed breed dog weighing about 14 pounds and estimated at nine years old. The BVSPCA veterinary team reported that she is underweight, and she suffers from severe dermatitis that left most of her side and rear hairless and has severe dental disease that will require a full mouth extraction of her teeth.
The cats range in age from about a year old to seniors. Most of the cats were covered in fleas and have ear mites, and many have untreated wounds. The remains of the deceased cat has been sent for a necropsy to determine the cause of death.
Despite the deplorable conditions in which they lived, many of the cats are well socialized. The healthiest and most well-adjusted cats start going up for adoption today, with 10 available at the BVSPCA Georgetown Campus and at least another 15 at the West Chester Campus. More will be released daily as their condition improves.
The BVSPCA Animal Protective Services team will be filing charges against the three people living in the home. The charges will include unsanitary conditions, lack of veterinary care, and placing animals at risk of bodily harm. The BVSPCA will also seek a prohibition to own animals.
“This is a very unfortunate situation of a well-meaning cat lover getting in over her head and not reaching out for help,” said Adam Lamb, BVSPCA Chief Executive Officer. “There’s no excuse for animals to suffer in conditions like this. We need the community to know we’re here to help, and we depend on neighbors, relatives and friends to report circumstances of concern before conditions get this bad.”
The BVSPCA says discovering most cases of cruelty and neglect start with tips from the public. Suspected cruelty should be reported in Chester County and Delaware County to the BVSPCA Animal Protective Services team at 484-302-0018 or in the state of Delaware to Delaware Animal Services at 302-255-4646.
The BVSPCA asks for help from the public in this case by giving one of these cats a loving home; if they are not in a position to adopt, by telling friends and family about their availability for adoption; and/or by making a donation to help with the significant cost to care for the 86 surviving animals.
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