Follow
Share

I have recently moved closer to my mother. Unfortunately I have come to find she is an animal hoarder. Only 2 dogs, but I have no idea how many cats. I would say at least 20 inside and countless strays she feeds outside. The problem is her home reeks of ammonia, to the point you have to gasp for air when you walk in. My mom doesn't see a problem and doesn't want to hear any dissenting opinions. She has started having high blood pressure and is on new medicine for it. All of the sudden she is very confused and hallucinating. I am going to visit tomorrow and will take her to the emergency room, but if nothing is done I need to call social services because she needs help and I can't let her and the animals live the way they are. It is beyond terrible to say the least. My problem is what happens if I call social services? Also if she has any inkling I was involved she would stop talking to me and I am the only one close enough and able to help her. I strongly suspect she will not be able to continue living where she is, which means she would need to move in with me. Impossible if she won't talk to me. Any advice would be appreciated I feel sick just contemplating what needs to be done! Needless to say I love her very much!

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
Reviewing your post about animal hoarding. It is possible to clean up things a little at a time. There was a time that her house and animals were acceptable-not perfect-but acceptable. It took some time to get really bad. Can you start with little improvements at a time? Treating the problem as an immediate crisis with all or nothing thinking will seem too hard a task, so go easier on yourself and Mom. Would that work better for you?
Myself, if I ran races, I would be a sprint runner, an all-or-nothing type of person, so my house would have to be cleaned out in a day. But now, even though I am trying really hard, I have to be satisfied with a slower pace, and an unfinished mess. Still, it is getting better, and my husband balks, even sabotages my efforts when I want to get everything done at once.
Remember the fairytale of the tortoise and the hare? Slow and steady wins the race?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

It's good that you stepped in. I hope things get better soon.

From what I have read, hallucinations can be very late onset schizophrenia, psychotic depression, or dementia with Lewy bodies. They can occur with AD, too. They can be side effects of medication and probably a consequence of malnutrition or social isolation.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Chicken Lady..........Your name says a lot. When you were a kid, did your mom make decisions for you that you hated? Were you mad at her? Did you ever think you hated her? You have become the parent and she has become the child. You bet she will be mad. But she will get over it. You have to step in for her health and safety. Pull up those big girl panties and get going. You can do this!
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Dear Chickenlady, Your Mom needs your help now. Neighbors have confirmed her 3 years of confusion and downward spiral. Do the right thing for your mother.
Once she gets better and wants to blame you for that, tell her in no uncertain terms: (excuse me while I curse a bit here) " Mom! You're d@mn straight I did , and I would do anything to help you again".
P.S. Your fears are understandable, but your projected conclusions have no basis in reality.
If you had taken her to E.R., they would have referred her to a neurologist by now.
A follow-up with urgent care is going to be of no value to your Mother's health, but I am hoping you prove me wrong.
It is perfectly okay if you think you can intervene privately, clean up her house, limit the cats-and still come away with her speaking to you or thanking you.
I am hoping for other caregivers to come alongside and walk you through this. You will need help and support.
How is she after the visit to urgent care? What was her attitude, did they diagnose her, medicate her?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Opps, while she was at urgent care.. but I guess that ship has sailed.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I agree that you need to call Animal Control.. while she is in the hospital, and maybe they can get the kitties out of there while she is gone. Maybe you can fib and say they got a "call" while she was in hospital and you were with her.. and they came and took them.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I got her to urgent care today, and basically they have no idea what is causing the confusion and hallucinations. She is showing a low sodium level, and I did pull the doctor aside and explained her living conditions. We are supposed to follow up later this week. I talked to some of her friends and neighbors today and they have all told me she has been going downhill and having confusion for at least 3 years. Sendme2help what i worry about is calling social services and her finding out i had anything to do with it. If she found out she wouldn't speak to me and then i can't help her.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

If Social Services respond to help the vulnerable adult, they may have your mother evaluated by a doctor in the hospital-this can be a good thing, especially if you are ever present as her advocate.
It is likely she will lose the cats, as Social Services will call Animal Control themselves.
Question: 1) What are you afraid of happening?
2) Can your observations be confirmed by anyone else? They will
check with neighbors.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Dear Chickenlady, Please check back with us, let us know how you are progressing. Just as important, what did not work or you and your Mom.
Thanks for joining caregivers here, and I hope you can receive some solutions and support.

What I have researched about anonymously reporting to social services, or to the
DMV, is that they try to protect your anonymity, however, if attorneys and the court gets involved, the records are subpoenaed. If the reported party fights back.
Did I say that right?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Call animal control in your county to report an animal hoarder. I feel worse for the cats and dogs than I do for your mom. This is no life for anyone or any animal. They will confiscate the animals and then you can go from there. Then call adult protective services to report a severe case of self neglect. If mom gets mad, so be it. Rather have her mad then living in those conditions. Do not let her move in with you.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Call 911 instead of taking her.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

A friend explained to me that if you report to DPSS/APS they will investigate you.
APS will only intervene if the problem is serious, such as two inches of cockroaches covering the floor (happens) and an adult unable to care for themselves, (gravely disabled). Of course, these two statements don't cover everything. Please don't shoot the messenger!
The agency to call is Animal Control in your county. They may, however, give the resident chances to rectify the situation. Take pictures, please.
One can get some ideas by watching the many Hoarding shows on t.v., or the internet.
Mother may be willing to let you intervene and clean up to keep her in her home after receiving the legal notice from Animal Control-an enforcement agency with mandated reporting requirements if they find elder neglect or a person gravely disabled. They may also remove some ill cats and the too many cats.
Call from a pay phone, you will have to report your observations factually, without an opinion.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Do NOT move her in with you, it would make you a prisoner in your home. When someone cannot be left alone, that means they need full time care all day and all night. I seriously doubt she will allow you to take her to the hospital. That leaves you with social services. Call them, ask for help.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Call anonymously, block your number with * 67 before calling. Tell a therapeutic fib and say you suspect one of the neighbors called. Tell another therapeutic fib if she suspects you and tell her you would never do something like that.

It may be lying but it's for yours and her benefit.

This is the kind of hard task that caregivers face - but it's necessary for her health before it gets worse, especially from the ammonia odors.
Helpful Answer (5)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.