PHOENIX — The Arizona Humane Society removed 60 cats and two dead kittens from an east Phoenix apartment Thursday afternoon.
Emergency animal medical technicians (EAMTs) were called to the apartment to do a welfare check on a potential animal hoarding case, according to AHS spokeswoman Bretta Nelson.
She said they went by on Wednesday to assess the situation and removed two very old dogs from the scene, and left food and water for the cats. They went back on Thursday with additional resources and worked with Phoenix police to remove the animals from the residence.
“From what I heard yesterday, they were kind of bouncing off the walls,” Nelson said. “Some seemed to be extremely feral with behavioral concerns.”
Nelson said they originally thought there were 25 to 30 cats in the apartment, but it “ended up being more cats than we ever imagined.”
Nelson said the ammonia levels inside the apartment were “through the roof” and EAMTs had to suit up in protective gear.
AHS staff members are concerned about diseases the cats may have.
“When you have that many cats in that small of a space, if they’re not vaccinated, then disease seems to run very rampant,” Nelson said.
Nelson said the staff has to prepare an area of the shelter to take the cats so they don’t hurt the general population or bring those illnesses into the shelter.
The animals will be taken to AHS’ Second Chance Animal Hospital where they will be medically evaluated by veterinarians. Nelson said many of the cats are feral and unable to be handled.
There is no information about the owner at this time.