45 cats and counting.
A Columbia County woman comes clean about dozens of unhealthy and possibly dangerous animals on her property.
Call it abuse or call it affection, the cat lover and collector of over twenty years could now be facing charges of animal abuse.
After a citizen reported some rotten conditions at the home of Nan King, Animal Control found more than 50 felines running loose.
"A lot of them are really sick," says Linda Fulmer, manager of Animal Control Services. "A lot of kittens with matted eyes and that type of thing. Respiratory problems."
And none of them have ever once visited a veterinarian.
It's why the county's now collecting the cats to quarantine and evaluate.
Animal control officials predict as many as one hundred cats could be roaming the woods near Nan King's home. They have set cage traps hoping to catch them.
"I didn't want any of them, you know?" says King. "I just don't like to kill things."
King admits she's overwhelmed.
"I have not broken any law intentionally," she says. "I mean, I don't know what else I'm supposed to do if they walk up on my property and I have to pay the pound to take them."
King says she thought the county charged $25 an animal, something she knew she couldn't afford, especially after 50 pounds of food a week and special medicines antibiotics.
"This little tube costs like ten bucks," King explains.
But there is little proof the cats are sociable, because they've been living untamed for far too long.
Chances are, most will be euthanized.
"Particularly when cats are running loose in the woods," says Fulmer. "I mean, we've got rabid foxes and raccoons in this county."
"You know, I don't mind having a certain amount, but I don't need that many," King says.
King says she's tried to get rid of her cats by placing ads in the IWANTA magazine, but with no luck.
Thursday, May 18, the county attorney will meet with Animal Control to decide what if any charges of animal abuse or neglect King may face.