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Animal Services

Posted on: August 11, 2023

40 Cats Removed from Hoarding Situation in Sterling Home

Link to information about Loudoun County Animal Services

Loudoun County Animal Services (LCAS) has taken 40 cats into its care following a pet hoarding investigation that revealed unsafe living conditions for animals and people. The cats are currently receiving veterinary care and will be available for adoption soon.

The investigation began on August 1, 2023, when a member of the public contacted LCAS to check the welfare on cats housed at a Sterling residence. When LCAS Humane Law Enforcement Officers (HLEO) arrived, they observed multiple cats both inside and outside of the home. Upon further inspection of the conditions inside the home, officers determined the cats were being kept in a manner that was a direct threat to their life, health and safety. Ammonia readings in the home were significantly elevated beyond safe levels for prolonged exposure for both humans and animals. Numerous surfaces in the home were covered with feces and urine and conditions were consistent with severe hoarding. 

Officers removed 40 cats from the residence. LCAS is providing veterinary care for the cats, which are various ages. The cats will be made available for adoption as they are cleared medically. Anyone interested in adopting is encouraged to view available animals on the LCAS website at and to stop by the shelter during daily adoption hours, 11:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.

The large intake of animals comes at a challenging time for the county’s only public animal shelter. Owner surrenders of cats have increased by 36% over the previous year, which required LCAS to set up additional emergency housing throughout the facility to accommodate the newly arrived cats from this case. 

LCAS is asking for donations of canned cat food, unscented cat litter and squeeze-up cat treats,  such as the “Churu” type treats, to help care for these cats. Learn more about how to make donations of supplies to help support shelter pets here.    

A civil hearing for the cats’ previous owner was held August 9, 2023. The court ordered an indefinite ban on pet ownership and restitution to cover LCAS’ cost in the amount of $7,141. 

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