Harrisburg woman arrested as cats seized from home

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A Harrisburg woman accused of hoarding cats at her Manada Street home was arrested Friday on a codes violation and charges of animal cruelty are pending against her.

Donna Layton, 55, was placed into a police car after humane officials arrived at her house to begin trapping the animals and investigate reports that as many as 80 feral cats were on the foul-smelling property.

The Humane Society of Harrisburg Area and the American Humane Association said three dead cats were found this morning and it appears about two dozen were living there.

“The ammonia level and the overall odor coming from the home, and just the signs in the home, would not indicate a house full of 80 cats,” said Amy Kaunas, executive director of the Humane Society of Harrisburg Area.

Authorities said Layton has been cooperative with the investigation.

“She has told us that she had been feeding the cats out of the goodness of her heart, and she doesn’t want them to go hungry and she wanted to try to take care of them,” Harrisburg police Captain Colin Cleary said.

Officials said there are no signs of rabies, but some of the cats have distemper and other diseases.


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