94 pets removed from Michigan home - WNEM TV 5

94 pets removed from Michigan home

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Almost 100 animals had to be removed from a home in Michigan and officials say it was one of the most serious case of animal hoarding they have ever seen.

"The condition that these pets were in was not healthy for them, so they're in a much better place now,” said John Dinon with the Ingham County Animal Shelter.

Of the 92 cats and two dogs removed from the home on Teel Avenue in Lansing, many had fleas and some had upper respiratory problems.

There were also feces everywhere, officials said.

"Our concern now is to make sure these animals are brought to a good state of health,” Dinon said.

Dinon said this was likely a case of animal hoarding - a situation where someone continually takes in more and more animals until they're eventually taken away, which means that the animal shelter has close to 100 more animals that they're going to have to take care of.

People with "Hoarding Disorder," which Dinon and therapists believe this owner had, don't believe it's a problem to have this many pets.

"They are often in denial or they minimize the problem, so they don't see it as an issue and they often do it to rescue the animals. They think that they're helping them and they do it because they either have an intense love for them or they feel the need to save them and rescue them or they have a strong fear that they'll be euthanized and taken away from them,” said Elizabeth Matlock, a clinical social worker and therapist.

Matlock specializes in hoarding, among other things, and said it usually starts with good intentions.

"It spirals out of control because that brain chemistry isn't - it's not functioning normally, so it will just spiral out of control leading to them having the 94 animals and they don't see it as a problem,” Matlock said.

Some of the animals may be available for adoption once the investigation is complete.

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