WESTFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- A Westfield cat shelter is close to capacity after taking in pets from what they said is a recent hoarding case.

"We are a no-kill shelter and a lot of people don't know that," said Paul Burt with the Westfield Homeless Cat Project.

Workers with the Westfield Homeless Cat Project said that they normally take in a few animals a day and regular adoption hours to find cats new homes means they normally can control the flow of feline tenants through their doors.

However, a recent hoarding case means the shelter needed to find space for 20 new cats in one day.

"I have less hair now than I had before. It's tough. You're used to having a couple, three, four maybe come in in a day and all of a sudden, you've got a bunch coming in all at once trying to find a place for all of them," Burt noted.

With the nature of cats who are not neutered, Burt added, "Thirteen kittens have been born in the last couple days from them"

Twenty soon became 33 and the youngest need to be quarantined.

"For the first six or seven weeks, kitten's only immune system is the mother's milk," Burt explained.

Burt said that just because you may see empty cages doesn't mean their flush with empty space. He said that many of their cats are in foster care or at the vet receiving treatment.

Westfield Police confirm to Western Mass News that this hoarding case - like many others - wasn't reported through their criminal investigation system.

"People a lot of times don't report it. There are still a few more cats left in that place. [What is it like for you when you know you take 20 cats out of a hoarding situation and you know that there are still some left in that house?] It's stinks. You just do the best job you can. Sometimes, when I leave here, I go home and cry sometimes. You just have to know that you're taking care of the ones that are in here and hopefully, you can get back to get the rest of them and help them out," Burt explained.

The Westfield Homeless Cat Project is looking for donations of canned cat and kitten food, dry kibble, and other supplies.

For more information on how to donate, CLICK HERE.

Copyright 2019 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.

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