Animals

Accidental shooting leads police to home with over 70 cats

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KENSINGTON, New Hampshire (Associated Press) – An accidental shooting led police in New Hampshire to a home infested by more than 70 cats and declared uninhabitable because it was covered in cat feces and urine.

Police in Kensington received a call from a hospital on Wednesday that a man had been admitted to the emergency room with a gunshot wound to the abdomen. Police went to the hospital and spoke to the man who said he was cleaning a gun and placing it on a workbench when it fell to the ground and was shot, injuring him. The police concluded that it was an accidental shooting.

The police also went to the house, where they initially found at least 30 cats.

“There was an overwhelming smell coming from inside the residence,” Kensington Police Chief Scott Kane said in a news release on Friday. “It was discovered that the interior was completely covered in cat feces and urine.”

Police contacted the New Hampshire Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which removed 67 black and white cats on Wednesday. Five more were found on Friday.

Cain said the levels of ammonia tested at home were much higher than what is considered safe. A health officer was called, Cain said, and “the house was determined to be uninhabitable and was promptly charged.”

He said the cats’ health would be determined before any criminal charges were brought. He said the man would face a charge related to firing the gun.

“She is doing very well,” said Lisa Denison, executive director of the SPCA at Stratham, based on initial examinations of the cats. “Some were thinner, some were heavy…You can imagine with 72 cats fighting over food, there would be winners and losers, just in terms of individuality and competition.”

She said the cats, aged from kittens to adults, are fearless but friendly.

Denison said the organization just cut the strip on a campus expansion last Saturday, and a week later, “we’re using every inch of that new space to quarantine and isolate this very large volume of cats.”

Adoption inquiries were directed to the organization’s website.

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