Woman kept 86 cats in home

Shelter inundated, but looking for good homes

DENNIS WEBB/The Daily Sentinel
LESLIE ROCKEY, director of Colorado Animal Rescue, holds two of the 86 cats that were brought to her shelter this week. A Battlement Mesa woman surrendered the cats to Garfield County Animal Control, saying she had to leave her two-bedroom apartment and could no longer care for them.

It’s not 101 Dalmatians. Think of it more as an 86-member feline nation that descended on Colorado Animal Rescue in Glenwood Springs this week, sending officials scrambling like kittens after balls of yarn to find room for all those cats.

“It’s a little bit overwhelming for us,” said Leslie Rockey, director of the Colorado Animal Rescue Shelter. But not daunting.

“We will find a way to filter all these cats through” to places where they can be cared for and eventually adopted, Rockey said.

The cats’ saga began Wednesday when a woman in Battlement Mesa surrendered them all to Garfield County Animal Control, saying she had to leave her two-bedroom apartment and could no longer care for them.

Garfield County officials declined to identify the woman and said no action would be taken against her.

But the cats had to go somewhere, and Colorado Animal Rescue is the county’s holding facility, so they were delivered there.

“We already had 80 cats,” including 20 kittens and 60 grown cats, Rockey said.

Fortunately, the center at 2801 County Road 114 also has an empty building behind it, one generally used for dogs with illnesses.

The dog runs now are filled with cats in crates, and Rockey and her staff are looking to find them more comfy surroundings.

None of the cats had been spayed or neutered, many of them have intestinal parasites, and some have upper-respiratory infections, Rockey said.

Still, most of them are doing very well, she said.

Rockey is looking for places across Colorado to take in the cats and said she’s confident all the cats eventually will find homes.

In the meantime, 86 cats need food, litter and veterinary care.

Donations can be made to Colorado Animal Rescue, and arrangements can be made at the center by calling 970-947-9173 or through the organization’s Web site, coloradoanimalrescue.org.


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