CHICAGO (CBS) — City officials and others have been working to try to capture dozens of stray cats living in an abandoned house in the Belmont Central neighborhood.
The city declared the brick bungalow at 6207 W. Roscoe St. uninhabitable in April. Sometime later, after the lone resident was evicted, but the windows were left open, and black cats poured out of the house, and invaded the neighborhood.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Hot And Sunny For Days To Come
Neighbors said workers didn’t board up the home at the time the homeowner was evicted, fearing the cats inside would die. Windows were left open for the cats to come and go.
Neighbors have said, although the cats wander the neighborhood, they make their home inside the vacant bungalow. Through an open window, trash is visible strewn all over the floors, and junk is piled high inside and outside the house.
Neighbor Barbara Korus said “it’s heartbreaking, because you can see that these animals are really, they’re vulnerable.”
She and the alderman’s office called it a hoarding situation inside the home.
“This quantity of cats didn’t just happen overnight,” Korus said.
Chicago Animal Care & Control crews were working with neighbors and animal rescue groups to save the cats.
Ald. Gilbert Villegas (36th) said he was only notified about the situation three weeks ago. Neighbors said, around the same time, they began to notice an overpowering stench, and started to notice lots of stray black cats around the house at 6207 W. Roscoe St.
Neighbors said they didn’t realize just how many cats were making the bungalow their home until recently.
“We started to see more and more animals outside,” Korus said.READ MORE: Thieves Steal Jeep With Woman Sleeping Inside In Edgewater As Rash Of Chicago Carjackings, Auto Thefts Continues
Neighbors estimated at least 100 cats are living at the house.