VERMILION COUNTY, Ill. (WCIA) — A woman is concerned about animal hoarding in Vermilion County. She says her own mother was the person doing it. Jaclyn Creason’s mother died a few months ago. Even though she’s been estranged from her for a few years, her mom’s house became her responsibility. When she went inside to look through her mom’s things, she found more than she bargained for.
“I knew she had some animals. I was expecting about 20 when I walked in there,” said Creason. “What I walked into was hoard environment. Cats and dogs stacked on top of each other just living in their own waste. There were 74.”
Creason is now working with a rescue to find new homes for the animals, but she feels it never should have gotten to this point. “There were consistently lime-positive patents and heart worm, round worm. Their refusing to stay up on vaccinations are signs to me… that an owner is neglectful.”
Creason says the animals were being cared for by a vet. She feels they should have noticed the issue and reported it. “They knew about 65 of the 74,” she said. “I don’t feel like they care about the animal’s welfare like they should, and who knows if they know about others that they aren’t reporting as well.”
We reached out to the Illinois State Veterinary Medical Association. They say veterinarians are required to report animal cruelty and animal fighting if they’re aware of it, but the owner of the clinic said they felt the animals were being cared for adequately. They added that the owner regularly took them to the vet for checkups.
Creason said she’s just happy the animals are going to better places. “I’ve done about 70 percent of the rehoming on my own, and I’m down to the nitty-gritty now. I’ve got two cats and about 18 dogs.”
We reached out to Vermilion County Animal Control. They said this situation was not reported to them. We also asked them about how many animals a person should have. They said there aren’t any clear ordinances – city or state – regulating how many cats someone can have. But there are limitations with dogs. For example, if dogs are not spayed or neutered, a person can only have six.