Fw: (US-fl) Animal lover 'just got carried away'
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Date: Fri, 30 Sep 2005 09:45:10 -0400
DELTONA -- Janet Godfrey was stunned to hear her dog groomer was
living in squalid conditions among 70 animals.
At least once a month, Linda Castillo , 63, was welcomed into
Godfrey's Orange City home to care for her Shih Tzu and toy poodle.
Her arrest Wednesday on charges of animal cruelty just doesn't fit
with Godfrey's mental image of the clean, reliable and kind woman
she's known for two years.
Yet sad scenes of people hoarding dogs, cats and even farm animals and
vermin aren't rare. Each year up to 250,000 pets are held by animal
hoarders, estimates the Hoarding of Animals Research Consortium, a
Boston-based group of animal and human behavioral experts studying the
Deltona Animal Control officers, wearing respirators to avoid the
fetid stench of feces and urine, rounded up 49 cats, 18 dogs and a
bird from Castillo's home Wednesday.
"I was just dumbfounded," said Godfrey.
In another recent case, a woman in the Washington, D.C., area was
found living with 266 live cats and 222 dead cats, with many of the
dead ones sealed in plastic containers, the Washington Post reported
A hoarder is usually defined as someone who holds more than a typical
number of animals without providing for their basic nutrition,
sanitation and veterinary care. The level of animal neglect is severe
enough to result in the animals' starvation, illness or death, but the
hoarder doesn't recognize the depth of the problem, according to the