Image courtesy of Fox19
Animal hoarding is a sensitive, and important issue. We must take necessary steps against animal hoarders; otherwise, the animals’ lives will be in danger. Animals that the ‘hoarders’ collect include cats, dogs, birds, rodents, reptiles, and even exotic and farm animals.
What is animal hoarding?
Many people love to have animals as their pets. They enjoy companionship and the animal also get shelter. But when a person possesses more animals than he or she can take care of, it is called animal hoarding. When this happens the person cannot provide the animals with enough food, sanitation, and veterinary care. They live in an unhygienic condition which deteriorates their health. The animal hoarder, however, denies that the living standard that he or she is providing to the animals is inadequate. People with personality disorder, delusional thinking, depression, and other mental problems become animal hoarders, according to research.
Signs that someone is an animal hoarder
The animal hoarders look intelligent and they feel that they are helping animals. They can gain the sympathy of others. They overlook the fact that the animals are suffering. Anyone can be an animal hoarder. But elderly people are at more risk of becoming animal hoarders due to their age-related complications.
The animal hoarders have a lot of animals and they often don’t know the number of animals they have. The living conditions of the animals are very bad and unhygienic. The floors often have feces, urine, vomit, and dirt. Their room smells of ammonia. Animals living there are not well socialized. You will find fleas and vermin there. The hoarder stays isolated from society and pretends that the animals are happy living where they are. They believe that the living environment is well managed and the animals are not suffering due to lack of food or other needs.
How to stop animal hoarding
If you think that someone is an animal hoarder then you should find ways to help that person. You can call the local humane law enforcement department and let them know that someone is struggling with animals and that you think he or she is an animal hoarder. There are social service groups that help people with aging problems. As most animal hoarders are seniors and they most likely have mental issues, you can call the social service groups so that they can take care of the person.
You must explain to the animal hoarder that you are there to help him or her. Tell the person that the animals will be in better condition if they are given to a rescue team or others. Volunteer to clean the shelter, take the dogs to walk, and perform other duties to improve the living standard of the animals. You can take them to be spayed, neutered, and vaccinated so that they stay healthy. You must also take time to train them so that they show good behavior.
The animal hoarder will continue to get more animals in the shelter and make the living condition of the animals worse unless they are monitored. You can take the animal hoarders for counseling so that their behavior towards the animals improves.
For more on animal hoarding read this journal article
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