Saturday, September 17, 2016

Yet Another Hoarding Crisis

I've seen too many of these notices on Facebook lately -- another hoard of birds locked up in some dark dangerous place, starving, dead, sick, all victims of someone with a serious mental illness.

This time it happened in Connecticut on September 15, 2016. Reports of a foul odor led to the discovery of over 200 animals, over 150 of them parrots. The Rhode Island Parrot Rescue has been working non-stop to get the animals out and into safe, clean environments. Of course they are not prepared for such an emergency; what rescue is? Of course, they need donations and supplies and hands.

Where is the line between being mentally and emotionally healthy and being a hoarder who causes pain?

When I fell in love with parrots I thought it would be a fine thing to have one or two of each species, or at least a few more of one species. Lucky for me and for all the parrots I will never have, common sense reared its head to remind me that I have limited space, a low tolerance for noise, a job I had to pay attention to, a social life, and not nearly enough money to feed and care for more parrots.

Even though there are hoarders are both sides of my family, I have managed to keep it at bay, though it isn't always easy.

But what of those who can't keep it at bay, those who know things are out of control but continue to take in more and more and more? I don't know the statistics, but I think most animal hoarders know they have too many animals and that they cannot care for them. What of their friends and neighbors who suspect a problem -- how do they broach the subject with alienating the hoarder or losing contact altogether?

I don't think I know any animal hoarders -- or rather, I've never seen evidence of animal hoarding. Do you know an animal hoarder? Have you reported them and how did it turn out? If you didn't report them, were you able to help the animals?


Elizabeth said...

When I was growing up, I think we had enough birds to border on hoarding. We had over 100, although most of that was little birds like parakeets. But still, I can't imagine what our neighbors thought.

No risk of that for me! I feel like a toddler, three cockatiels, and a Boston Terrier are plenty! said...

Wow, that's a lot of birds, even if they were all parakeets. I'm like you - my three are more than enough for me!

Unknown said...

Unfortunately, the rescues are starting to behave more like hoarders. They make it insanely difficult to adopt sometimes. (they also fail on occasion like the one in Canada) There was a hoarding situation in Dakalb Co Georgia recently but luckily Ziggy's Parrot rescue swooped in. (sarcasm) The first rule with that rescue is that the parrot has to "like you" before you are allowed to adopt. That at least insures that the rescue birds have plenty of people visiting, hoping that someone will interpret some parrot behavior as "liking." LOL I just found your blog. Like it. said...

Thanks for the kind words!

Yes, I know a lot of rescues are in over their heads. I guess we all need to be more vigilant and volunteer to help more.