On Wednesday night, Fayette Regional Humane Society (FRHS) took part in two rescues — one of which involved multiple cats (three dead) after their owner was found deceased in the home.
According to FRHS Chief Humane Agent and Outreach Director Brad Adams, FRHS assisted Ross County following a call from a Ross County Sheriff’s Office deputy. The request was made because Ross County Humane Society contracts with FRHS to provide humane law enforcement services. A report on the situation indicated 20 cats had been located in the home of a man that was believed to have died a few weeks prior to being found.
“I received the call around 8:30 p.m. while I was an hour away from Fayette County. I was able to dispatch our deputy humane agents at 8:39 p.m. to meet at our humane society at 9 p.m, and while I was driving back to the county, deputy agents Daugherty, Honicker, and Bageant had all of the needed equipment gathered and shortly thereafter were en-route to the location where I also arrived shortly afterward,” explained Adams via email.
Although the report indicated 20 cats, only 11 were found alive. One cat was found deceased in the bath tub and another on the kitchen floor. Adams explained there was no access observed to food or water, although several cans of unopened cat food were found in the residence.
“The Ross County deputy was very helpful to capture the cats and stayed with us the entire time. It was a lengthy process trying to find and capture the cats as they were very scared and didn’t seem the most accepting of strangers being in their territory. The conditions inside of the home also added adversity to make capturing the cats easy from the severe clutter, garbage and animal fecal matter on the floors. The garbage and clutter as well as furniture had to be moved in every room of the house, and at times tipped up where we would find cats hiding. Without the team effort between all who were at the property, the process could’ve been a lot longer,” wrote Adams.
Cats that were rescued were taken back to the FRHS Care and Adoption center as Ross County doesn’t have a facility that can accommodate them, according to Adams. This is part of working together as, in the past, Ross County has housed dogs that could not be housed by FRHS.
“It is really good when humane societies can partner and network together to help animals. What one humane society is able to do, another humane society may not. So, when you share resources in tough situations, more animals are helped in the long run for the better which is most important. The Fayette County Dog Shelter is another prime example of having a great partnership, and they have helped us with housing dogs too,” wrote Adams.
The rescue lasted several hours and faced numerous challenges.
“We didn’t return back to Fayette County until around 1 a.m.,” explained Adams. “We had to set up multiple cages with nice warm bedding and food and water. All of the cats also had to be given subcutaneous fluids due to the severe dehydration. Unfortunately, one of the cats had to be euthanized after a severe oral disease was observed that was beyond medical treatment, and pain or suffering could not be prevented. Staff didn’t get out of the humane society until 2 a.m.”
Another rescue that recently occurred happened on Tuesday and involved a cat being stuck in a steel leg hold trap for at least 24 hours. FRHS responded after receiving a dispatch from the Washington Police Department (WPD), which contacted FRHS after receiving a call from a citizen.
The trap was most likely meant for raccoons, according to Adams. Deputy Humane Agent Johnny Daugherty freed the cat’s leg from the trap after Adams gave the cat a sedative to reduce any further pain and discomfort.
According to FRHS Executive Director Dr. Lee Schrader, other than bruising to her foot, no further damage was done to the young adult domestic-short-haired cat, now named “Terri.”
Terri has since been spayed and is now ready for adoption.
“We found the trap not tagged and reported the untagged device to the Fayette County Wildlife Officer to further investigate,” wrote Adams.
Reach journalist Jennifer Woods at 740-313-0355.