LEE COUNTY, Fla.- Wall-to-wall garbage and insects led code enforcement to officially call a Fort Myers home on Seminole Street unliveable. The house was deemed that way yesterday, as seven cats were taken away.
"Ashamed, I let it go so long," said the homeowner Friday.
The homeowner told WINK News the trash has been building up for years. She did not want to be identified.
"Tell yourself, 'I'll do it tomorrow.'," she said.
But she's ready to change, already making a big difference in just one day.
"It's getting to be a success story," said Lt. Angel Cruz of Lee County Domestic Animal Services.
"Cleaned the porch, and started in the entrance way to the kitchen. I want to stay in my home," she said.
Animal Services says there's no shortage of hoarding cases. They've seen 30 to 40 in the past few months alone, which can make staffing difficult.
Friday morning officers climbed through yet another house of hoarding horrors in Lehigh Acres.
"Everywhere you look there's feces droppings. If you open up the closets, you'll have roaches and everything coming out," said Lt. Cruz who was with us at that home as well.
One dog lived in the bathroom, another was riddled with fleas, and a pet tortoise sat in its own filth.
The homeowner said she's depressed and embarassed. She also didn't want to be identified.
"I don't look at it. Go straight ahead, and I have a room I hide in," the homeowner said.
But she wants to clean up.
"...say I can have my old dog back if I get my house together in a week," she said.
Just like her fellow hoarder in Fort Myers, she said, "Just be glad when I get it done."
We asked if she would continue to clean up. She said "oh yeah."
Neither woman is facing charges. The animals are OK.