LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - The Humane Society of Pulaski County has its hands full trying to manage dozens of cats rescued from a home in McCrory, Arkansas.
Most of the time when shelters take in that many animals in a single rescue operation those animals can be in rough shape, but that's not the case this time.
"They did everything they could, these were basically like their kids, they did everything they could to make sure the cats were well taken care of," said Humane Society of Pulaski County Staff Veterinarian Teresa Medlock. "The lady and the gentleman had most of them sterilized already, we don't know exactly how many, we'll know that in the next week, and then they vaccinated as they could. And so the cats were well cared for."
On Friday, the Humane Society of Pulaski County took in more than 30 cats from the home. Their owner, whose wife recently passed away, was not able to deal with the memories.
"The husband is wanting to kind of start his life over again away from the sadness," said Medlock. "It's very hard for him because these were basically his wife's cats and he just lost her a week ago so it's still very emotionally raw for him. He was very saddened seeing the kitties go but he knew that we would be able to find them good, indoor homes where they could be protected and he said that's what his wife wanted so we're doing the best we can to honor her wishes."
The man already gave up 21 cats a few weeks ago when his wife got sick. With the 33 new arrivals on Friday the shelter has now taken in a total of 54 cats from the couple, putting even more stress on a facility that's already full.
"Our walls are bulging," said Medlock. "We stay full year-round so this has really stretched our staff and, unfortunately, the medical staff which is only me and my assistant, it's really going to stretch us thin."
Being a "No-Kill" shelter, the Humane Society will now house all the cats until each one finds a home. The biggest difference between these and other animals from mass-rescue operations is the condition of the cats.
"These cats were not doing without," added Medlock. "He came and fed them several times a day and if any of them were sick they did their best to get them to their veterinarian so these cats were not neglected in any shape or form."
Medlock said the shelter badly needs donations of cages, litter boxes, food bowls and Purina Cat Chow. They also need help taking care of the medical bills for each of the more than 50 cats (and one dog) that came from the couple.