Cat Man and Team Saved 40+ Cats and Kittens from Abandoned Home and Turned Their Lives Around


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It was an emotional journey for these rescuers who worked together tirelessly to save the lives of 40+ precious felines found in a hoarding situation.

The condition of the house was so horrid that they had to put on a hazard suit before entering the door. They couldn't believe how these cats had managed to survive in such an environment for so long, but they had one goal in mind—to save them all!

Supplied by Chris Poole

Deb Meckl Parquette and Diane Harris, two sisters, were notified by the landlord of a property in Northern Illinois that had been vacated for eight months.

There was an unbelievable amount of cats and kittens living inside. Knowing that the sisters had been involved in animal rescue, he contacted them, pleading for help.

"It was obvious upon arrival that this was a dire situation, these poor cats and kittens were being kept in appalling conditions, feces everywhere, poop everywhere, fleas everywhere and suffering aplenty," Diane said.

Supplied by Chris Poole

At the end of July Diane and Deb joined forces with Chris Poole (Cat Man Chris from Cole and Marmalade) and a team of volunteers to retrieve all the kittens and get them immediate vet care on the first rescue day.

They returned to the house later to get the remaining adult cats to safety. Some were easy to catch, others required some effort and lots of team work.

Supplied by Chris Poole

"We could have set live traps every morning and every night for weeks and still not have caught all of the cats. We had to act fast and we had to get them out of there as soon as possible," Chris shared with Love Meow.

After a long day, they were able to safely get all the cats out of the property and into a truck filled with carriers. It took them a week to find temporary housing for the kitties, but they found the perfect location.

Supplied by Chris Poole

"We started a fundraiser and people were very generous so we could purchase all the crates we needed to house the cats and supplies and most importantly cover all the vet costs," Chris told Love Meow.

Rescuing is not a glamorous job. It is difficult and often very challenging. Because of rescuers like them, these beautiful animals are able to get a new lease on life that they all so deserve.

Look at this incredible transformation!

Supplied by Chris Poole

"I have never been involved in this sort of rescue mission before. As you can see many of the cats had just given up. Their spirit had been broken and they were just surviving day by day," Chris said.

"It was amazing this small group of people got together and decided to get these cats the help they deserved without the support from any big animal welfare organization. I'm very proud of what we've accomplished in a short amount of time."

Supplied by Chris Poole

Today, almost half of the kitties have found foster homes or permanent homes! They're all doing much better and it is extremely rewarding.

"You know it's all been worthwhile when you see these cats in a clean environment with comfy beds to sleep in and toys and wet food for the first time in their lives," Chris said.

Supplied by Chris Poole

One of the cats gave birth to a litter of kittens. Instead of starting their lives in a dirt-filled house, they were brought into the world surrounded by love and comfort.

The grand total saved is at 42.

Supplied by Chris Poole

"As of yesterday we were down to only 11 cats that need new homes, we're almost there!"

This kitty is cuddling with her forever human, feeling loved!

Supplied by Chris Poole

If you would like to support their rescue efforts, click here to make a donation. Follow the kitties' updates on Cat Man Chris and Cole and Marmalade.

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Related story: Man Visits 10 Kittens In Need of Love, They Make Him Their Cat Dad On the Spot!

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