Shelter says 109 cats survive after removal from mobile home

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COCKE COUNTY, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Friends Animal Shelter of Cocke County said all 109 cats and kittens rescued from a home in a "massive hoarding case" have survived. The shelter said it has received help from several other shelters in the area, and it plans on getting several of the cats spayed or neutered later this week.

Friends Animal Shelter of Cocke County announced more than 100 cats were rescued in a "massive hoarding case." / Courtesy:WVLT

Friends said help has come from the Humane Society of the Tennessee Valley, the Humane Society of Jefferson County, Morristown Hamblen Humane Society, Brother Wolf Animal Rescue, cats in the Cradle New Life Sanctuary, Misfit Dog Project, Happy Paws Kitten Rescue and Ferile Feline Friends have all been helping.

In Knoxville, the Humane Society of the Tennessee Valley is caring for four grown cats and 13 kittens. They are getting detailed medical care, according to Cera Smith at HSTV.
"So whenever we intake new animals, we always have them seen by our veterinarian. We have a veterinarian on staff who does a check on them, make sure that they're healthy. They get testing for feline leukemia, FLV, FELV, rabies vaccinated, they get their distemper vaccination. Anything that they need, we can de-worm them." After two weeks of quarantine and foster care time, those felines will be ready to adopt.

The 109 cats from the hoarding case have not yet been adopted due to receiving vaccinations and treatments. The Cocke County shelter said some cats would be ready to adopt Wednesday.

Nearly 25 cats from the hoarding case are in isolation due to severe medical need.

The organization posted dozens of photos on its Facebook page of the cats as well as what appears to be the area they were taken from.

"The home and cages are full of fleas, flies and maggots. The smell is enough to knock you over," the post said.

The organization said they pulled 13 cats from the home and got the rest on Monday.

Elisha Henry, the shelter's director, said they got a tip about the pets and learned the community was dropping the pets off to an elderly woman who lived alone in a mobile home.

"I actually found myself tearing up a bunch whenever we got back, because you can tell how much it meant to her. She will never say thank you to me or my staff, but you can tell as it was going on, it was hurting her because it had become her life," Henry said.

The shelter is asking for help.

"We need every shelter, rescue and foster in line to pull these cats. We do not have enough room for them. Please share, please help."

Some of the pets are sick. Some illnesses include worms and an upper respiratory infection.

Anyone can adopt or foster pets by visiting the shelter. There is a two for one sale of $50. That covers spay and neuter procedures and vaccinations.

To help, volunteer you can reach out to them on their Facebook page here or call at 423-532-8475.

The elderly woman isn't facing criminal charges in exchange for promising not to have more than eight cats in her home at a time.

She must also keep them safe and clean.

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