Owner of neglected cats rescued in Milwaukie wants to give up his rights to them

MILWAUKIE, Ore. -- The Oregon Humane Society rescued 41 cats and one dog Thursday from a man who is under investigation for animal neglect.

The Humane Society said it is working with the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office on the case. OHS got a warrant and seized the animals from a home in the 5000 block of Hull Avenue at around 1 p.m. The Humane Society had been working with the animals' owner for years about caring for them.

"We're estimating it will be days to weeks for some of the cats, even months. They'll require significant rehabilitation."

A few weeks ago, a neighbor filed a complaint against the owner. The humane soceity decided it was time to take action and remove the animals.

Some of the cats are covered in sores, others have respiratory or dental infections.

Lytle said the animals are part of a court case and are evidence in that case. That means the animals will not be available for adoption until the owner voluntarily releases them or the court orders the owner to do so. Until then the Humane Society will treat the animals until the case is resolved.

KATU News Reporter Hillary Lake tracked down the owner on Thursday night. He said he has no resentment against the Oregon Humane Society, or his concerned neighbors. He said he's grateful the Oregon Humane Society is helping his animals becasue it's helping him too.

The man said his wife died about 10 years ago, and his oldest daughter died the following hear. He fell into a deep depression. The cats became a source of comfort to him. He said he's been praying for help. He recently realized he needed help, but wasn't ready to ask for it. He also didn't know how to help himself.

The animals' owner also told KATU News he wants to give up his rights to them, and signed papers to do so on Thursday. Lytle couldn't confirm that Thursday night. Lytle said if the man did, some of the animals could be adopted sooner rather than later.