700 Hoarded Animals Safe, But What About the Next 700?


A Florida court last week formally revoked ownership of 700 cats from a facility, the Caboodle Ranch, that was hoarding animals. While the ruling is a win for these abused, neglected cats, it also illustrates the difficulties of protecting animals from hoarders.

According to Petside.com, the Caboodle Ranch cats lived in filth, “which resulted in many of them suffering from upper respiratory infections so severe they were unable to breathe. One cat’s eye disease was so advanced and untreated that the kitty wound up going blind.” An undercover PETA investigator who filmed conditions at the ranch said he witnessed “founder Craig Grant wiping the noses, eyes, and faces of some of the cats using Clorox wipes.”

Caboodle Ranch started out as a sanctuary for homeless cats. Several years ago Petside.com reported glowingly on the care the no-kill shelter provided. What went wrong? It would appear that Grant became a hoarder.

The Hoarding of Animals Research Consortium defines animal hoarding as:

Having more than the typical number of companion animals

Failing to provide even minimal standards of nutrition, sanitation, shelter, and veterinary care, with this neglect often resulting in illness and death from starvation, spread of infectious disease, and untreated injury or medical condition

Denial of the inability to provide this minimum care and the impact of that failure on the animals, the household, and human occupants of the dwelling

Persistence, despite this failure, in accumulating and controlling animals

Hoarders tend to believe that no one else will care for their animals as well as they will, which makes them loathe to give up any of the animals they have collected or to cooperate with authorities. Approximately a quarter million animals a year are hoarded in the U.S.

In its distortion of reality, animal hoarding is a mental illness and it is one that medical science does not know how to cure or treat effectively. The ASPCA reports that current research suggests “attachment disorders in conjunction with personality disorders, paranoia, delusional thinking, depression and other mental illnesses” lead to animal hoarding. Previously Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) was thought to play a major role in the affliction.

The legal system also doesn’t know how to stop hoarding. That is why the Florida court decision is such a limited victory. The court rescued 700 cats from heinous conditions and banned Grant from acquiring any more animals. But this ruling came from a Florida state court. To escape the ban, Grant need only move to another state where the Florida court’s ruling does not apply and start over with a new collection of cats. Given the mentality of hoarders, he is likely to do just that.



Nickihermes Celine
Past Member 4 years ago

sad,very sad.thank you for sharing 8/7,

Laura T.
Laura T4 years ago

ok in hording situations some follow up is needed to ensure the hoarder does not reoffend, this is a big issue for me because once the animals are out of the home no one checks in on a regular basis to ensure they don't move&start the cycle all over again! I always cringe at stories about seized animals because its a 50-50 shot on the rescuer simply euthanizing a slew of animals as "unadoptable" w/no oversight as to if they truly are or if homes have been offered. look up the story on peta seizing rats at a reptile shop then systematically euthanizing all of them even though help&homes were offered by many rat rescues. I know this happens everywhere w/all types of animals

Thomas K.
Thomas K5 years ago

As a matter of fact, I would have to say that the attack on Caboodle Ranch demonstrates that the courts, the police, and the SPCA are unfit to deal in any way with a colony of animals.

Thomas K.
Thomas K5 years ago

The courts were wrong to rule against Caboodle ranch. This attack was illegal and most of those animals will be killed. They were better left alone but the neurotic idiots who pushed for the attack just can't leave anyone alone, can they?

Anastasia J.
Anastasia J5 years ago

Hoarding animals is such a sad situation as the hoarder's intentions were often in the animals' best interests. The inability of the legal system to properly handle situations like the one above is just another example of how inadequate most animal cruelty laws (and the government's monitoring of external animal rescue groups) really are.

Duane B.
.5 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

Natasha Salgado
Past Member 5 years ago

No one should ever have 700 cats,even most shelters cannot carry that many. It's all about SPAY&NEUTER. i'm sure that the number of the original cats being hoarded was more like 40 or so but as we all know to well,cats can have up to 8 kittens in 1 litter,and cats don't stop at 1,so you end up with 700 cats fairly quickly. MEOW.

Lynn Carin
Lynn Carin5 years ago

Unbelievable! Sadly noted.

Iris Siereveld
Iris Siereveld5 years ago

I just cant believe this story. He took in abanded and neglected cats

Jen M.
Ms. JL M5 years ago

OMG. You people are still delusional about Grant! THE COURTS RULED AGAINST HIM! The COURTS! You know, the ones whose job it is to be neutral and CONSIDER ALL EVIDENCE?

Geez! This IS a victory for the cats, and FYI, PETA did NOT retain possession of the animals.

Holy Mother of READ SOMETHING!