A California vet and animal lover has transformed her 4,200-square-foot home into a cat sanctuary and has decided to live instead in a 1,600-square-foot mobile home located on the same 12 acres of land on which the cat haven is located.
Lynea Lattanzio is the founder of the Parlier, California-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit Cat House on the Kings which currently houses 800 lucky adult cats and 300 lucky kittens that are allowed to live safely and cage-free under both her supervision and with a staff of volunteers.
According to Fox 11, Lattanzio has been housing cats for the past 24 years over which she claims to have lived with over 28,000 felines. The sanctuary reportedly also houses a dozen dogs and a handful of peacocks.
— CatHouse onthe Kings (@cathouseotkings) January 20, 2016
She said the cost of running the operation is approximately $1.6 million annually and relies entirely of donations from the public to cover the cost of food, litter, maintenance, staffing, veterinary and medical services. Fox 11 notes the organization currently has 500 cats up for adoption.
Whereas Lattanzio’s selfless and caring gesture has created a safe environment for stray or unwanted cats to live in a healthy way, other animals are far less fortunate.
Both the Arts & Entertainment (A&E) and Animal Planet have aired series exposing unfortunate situations in which cats are forced to live in dirty, dangerous environments, including being hoarded by individuals with underlying emotional issues.
The worst documented case of cat hoarding arguably involves a woman named Terry who was featured in an episode of Hoarders in 2012. The cashier had reportedly run into financial turmoil and was no longer able to care for her cats, which left her home in utter shambles and covered in cat feces. Because it was too difficult for her to dispose of her dead cats, she would hoard their corpses in her refrigerator, alongside food and groceries.
A crew commissioned by the Hoarders team determined that of the 49 cats living with Terry, only 18 were healthy enough to be saved. Terry was not allowed to keep any of the cats and was told that she would be sent to prison for animal cruelty.
Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz.