There are things to watch out for if you are concerned that a loved one is hoarding. These include:
- Watch for stacks of newspapers or mail that have been sitting around for long periods of time
- Compulsive shopping with lots of unused new items still in bags
- Inability to throw anything away, including trash
- Collection of animals
- Keeping clothes that are never worn
- Keeping broken electronics and appliances
- Rooms in the home are just places for storage
- Living space is impacted – no place to eat or sleep
- Person no longer allows visitors into the home
What is Animal Hoarding?
Animal hoarding is a complex form of hoarding where someone accumulates too many animals and fails to take care of them, while denying the clear detrimental effects to the animals, the house, and the people around them. At Clean Earth Restorations we have helped clean and restore many homes where animal hoarding was a problem and know that it is a very difficult situation to unravel.
Why Do People Hoard Animals?
The Hoarding of Animals Research Consortium of Tufts University states that many hoarders have “fertile soil” for mental health problems that, when combined with a variety of traumatic experiences, can lead to dysfunctional attachment styles to people and addictive behavior. This diagram shows how this can happen.
Who Becomes an Animal Hoarder?
Though hoarding can and does exist in every age, gender, and socioeconomic category, the HARC claims there is existing data to support the broad generalization that the stereotypical animal hoarder is often a single, older woman, living alone and socioeconomically disadvantaged.
What Can I Do If I Suspect Someone is Hoarding Animals?
Animal hoarding is more often than not detrimental to both the animals and the owners of the animals. The animal neglect associated with hoarding can be considered a punishable crime. In San Diego you can report suspected hoarding to the San Diego Humane Society. Though their goal is to educate the public on how to properly care for animals they are entitled to “exercise the powers of a peace officer while investigating animal-related crimes.”
“Clean Earth Restorations is one of the few companies in town who are trained and certified to handle hoarding and bio-recovery clean up services. They do a great job handling the sensitivity of an accidental death clean up scene or the challenges of helping someone who hoards.”
“I was supporting a friend in hiring CER. She was very abused and uncomfortable with people in her home and packing her belongings. The staff at CER, particularly Victor, were very compassionate and accommodating to her. They worked around her schedule and emergencies. The final price was very reasonable given the challenging task at hand.”