Local vet weighs in on hoarding factors after massive round-up

Animal hoarding cases, like the one in Reidland Wednesday, are widespread, according to Paducah Veterinarian William Cummings.  180 animals, including birds, dogs, rabbits and rats were taken from a home on Merrydale Drive.

“It’s kind of like people.  You can only feed so many people, only feed so many animals,” he said.

Dr. Cummings seen many similar cases during his nearly 50 years in business and they all begin the same.  “It starts one at a time,” Dr. Cummings said. 

He said people often hoard animals because they may have attachment issues, suffered a personal loss and are trying to compensate for it, or think they are trying to rescue or save the animals which could continue into years of collection.

In some cases, Dr. Cummings said the hoarder doesn’t seek any care for them.  “They don’t spay or neuter them and then it just snowballs,” he told Local 6. 

Animal control officers believe the dogs, many of them Miniature Pinscher mix were bred.  It’s unclear how long the homeowner had the animals. Cummings said many people don’t realize the magnitude because they take in the animals over a period of several years.

“What’s the limit? I mean, it’s according to what you can financially afford.  What are your facilities and who’s going to help you with it,” he said. 

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