70 cats found in Ogden home after resident sent to hospital for health problems, officials say

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OGDEN, Utah -- Dressed in hazmat suits and braving the overwhelming stench, crews brought out cat after cat after cat.

“You walked in and there were just cats everywhere. I had this giant kennel and I reached down and started, I got like eight cats all at once,” said Stefanie Butte, Ogden City Animal Supervisor who first responded to the home.

For nearly a decade a veteran with mental disabilities has been living in a condemned Ogden home, hoarding more than 70 cats.

“I think he got in over his head and being a vet and having some of the issues he did they were his family basically,” Butte said.

The man was sent to the hospital for health problems last week. That's why a concerned family member called animal services about the cats.

Neighbors say not only is it unsafe and unsanitary, but the smell is unbearable. Canned food, litter, flies and cockroaches, overtake the yard and inside the home.

“I can't even imagine not dying from the smell in there. I don't know how you would live in it. I really don't,” Butte said.

More than 50 cats have been recovered. But animal services believe there's still dozens inside.

Some of the sick and aggressive cats will be euthanized. Most are going to the shelters.

The homeowner is still in the hospital. Animal services say it's likely the conditions in the home made the man ill.

“This will kill people and the animals will get sick and spread diseases,” Butte said.

Usually in these type of cases animal services would press charges. But due to the man’s mental state no charges will be filed.

If you want to adopt any of these cats they are at the Weber County Animal Shelter.

If you can't adopt but want to help the shelter is now in desperate need of donations. Find out how to donate at http://www3.co.weber.ut.us/animalshelter/ or visit the shelter's Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Weber-County-Animal-Services/338510596207976.

7 comments

  • Brian Berlin

    Aug. 11th
    It is great to worry about all these cats. But what should be the main concern is to get the house cleaned before this Veteran is released to go home.
    veteran Affairs, Weber/Morgan Health Department or any group are you up to the task of spear heading a volunteer cleaning crew. If so put me at the top of the list. Anyone else? Brian

    • Pedro

      Getting the cats out is obviously the first step to getting the house cleaned up. I don’t think they make litter boxes big enough to service 70 cats.

      • Pedro

        Sorry Brian, I re-read the article and get your point. Instead of requesting people contact the animal shelter to adopt the cats, they should be requesting volunteers to clean the home. Your point is (finally) well received.

  • Beccababy73

    What Selfish, rotten neighbors to only care about the house. I guess they were to busy to be concerned with the human being inside that home. If you all knew there was a problem, you should have reported it. Amazing, just mind boggling. Selfish, entitled people.

  • Bill Johns

    Its not going to do much good to clean up “a condemned Ogden home,” The cats need to be taken care of, but the man needs a lot more help than the cats.

    • Crislee Anderson Moreno

      But it’s at least a start. If he comes back to a safe environment then receives the mental health care he needs that’s huge. Most of the time the homes are able to be saved. It will just take a lot. Utahns pride themselves on helping other. Time to put their words into actions and get together to help this man.

  • Crislee Anderson Moreno

    This poor guy needs help as much as the cats. I hope someone, many someones helps him clean it all up and get the house safe to live in again. I know a local groomer who said she’d volunteer to groom some of the cats. I hope more step up to help also. Sad for both the man and the cats.

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