63 cats and kittens rescued from DC residence



WASHINGTON, DC – Officials removed 63 cats and kittens from a Northwest home Tuesday evening, officials say.

Officers reported to the 800 block of Decatur avenue, NW after being contacted by the realtor for the home. Officers arrived to find a total of 63 cats; 27 are kittens under one month old. Upon entering the house, the officers observed unsanitary conditions. Officers found 20-25 cats inside the home, 20 adult cats and more than 30 kittens in a U-Haul trailer. Many of the cats and kittens are suffering from Upper Respiratory Infections, are underweight and overheated due to confinement in the U-Haul trailer.

The animals belonged to two women who had been living illegally in the residence.

“This is an extreme case of hoarding and inhumane treatment of animals,” said Lisa LaFontaine, President and CEO of Washington Humane Society-Washington Animal Rescue League.  “These cats and kittens, most of whom are in very vulnerable condition, will require medical care, proper nutrition and humane living conditions – all of which they have been denied until the moment they entered our care. With an intake of 63 cats and kittens over a 24 hour period, WHS-WARL’s ability to house these animals and provide them with the resources they need will be taxed.  Thankfully, we expect to adopt more than 150 animals on Saturday at a special adoptions event which should allow us to give these cats and kittens undivided attention and space for recovery.”

Officers removed 38 cats and kittens on Tuesday evening and returned to the property Wednesday to remove the remaining animals.  The cats and kittens were immediately taken to the Animal Care facility at New York Avenue where they will be evaluated by WHS-WARL medical staff.

This WHS-WARL Humane Law Enforcement case remains under investigation.

The special adoption event referred to is Clear the Shelters, an annual national program that offers fee-waived adoptions to qualified adopters on Saturday, July 23 from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.  Both WHS-WARL Adoption Centers (71 Oglethorpe Street, NW and 1201 New York Avenue, NE) will be open for this program.