Hundreds of Guinea Pigs Being Hoarded in Eureka, Alleges Letter Writer

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Photo of the alleged guinea pig hoarding taken several years ago. [Photos by Mary Hann]

To the Community,Why is one of the largest known guinea pig hoarding situations in America being allowed to continue, right in the heart of Eureka? It’s quite simple: Animal Control is not doing enough (if anything) to stop it.I’ve rescued many animals from different situations throughout my life, and never have I been as confounded as I am by this particular hoarding atrocity. The Los Angeles Guinea Pig rescue removed over 400 guinea pigs from this hoarder’s house last year, all females. This left over 300 males still at the house (we learned later that the guinea pig hoarder had, accidentally or on purpose, kept some females and allowed them to start breeding again after the rescue took place). After they gave birth, the rescue agency reports that there were over 1600 guinea pigs total. This is costing the agency approximately $50,000 a year, including medical care and the barn they have to rent for all the pigs to be housed. Even after all of that, the guinea pig breeding and hoarding has not been stopped. If you search “guinea pig hoarding, Eureka” you will see several articles about this situation on a number of reputable news sites. You can also contact the Los Angeles Guinea Pig Rescue for more information.

A memorandum about this situation went out last year to several prominent community members of Eureka. Photographic evidence of the state of the guinea pigs was provided along with the memorandum.

wounded guinea

Injured guinea pig from the alleged hoarding situation in 2017.

The animals at this house suffer from various injuries without receiving proper medical care. Most are undernourished because their diet consists of bread, potatoes, and some hay. Not all of the guinea pigs have constant access to fresh water. Most have either ringworm, scurvy, and/or mites, the latter of which slowly eat away at their bodies because they are not properly treated. I have seen all of this with my own eyes. This is not because the guinea pig hoarder is a bad person. It’s because several hundred guinea pigs are simply too many for any one person (or family) to take care of. It would also be financially impossible for one person to keep this many guinea pigs healthy unless that person was quite wealthy and had the help of veterinarians and care providers.

When I first started working with the guinea pig hoarder, I helped him relocate a total of 56 guinea pigs. He has saturated the entire county (and surrounding areas) with way too many guinea pigs. Once I realized he had no intention of stopping the breeding process, I stopped helping him relocate the animals. I still have 12 at my house which I care for, and let me tell you: taking care of 12 guinea pigs takes all of my spare time. It is also extremely costly; from the vet bills to the hundreds of cups of fruits, vegetables, hay and guinea pig pellets this group of mine consumes each month. People think I’m crazy when I tell them I have 12 guinea pigs. So why is it ok for one person in Eureka to have hundreds and hundreds of them??

If anyone has suggestions on how to encourage Animal Control to actually do something about this, I would be most grateful. My secret fear is that Animal Control doesn’t give a flying fig about these pigs, and that is the real reason nothing is being done to stop the hoarding, malnutrition, disease, and general neglect. Please call Animal Control at (707) 441-4060 and ask what is being done about this situation. You will probably have to leave a message, but most people who call animal control in Eureka have difficulty receiving a call back. My suggestion is that you ask to speak with whatever sergeant is on duty at the time instead of leaving a message.

Mary Hann



  • These rodents require little space and happily hoof up vegetable scraps, factors that make them ideal to farm. Gourmet cuy, however, are fed an exclusively alfalfa diet to ensure the meat is as tender as possible. They’re often cooked whole—yes, with the head, teeth, ears, and other parts left intact—and doused in salt and garlic to crisp up the skin. Nothing to see here folks keep moving !

  • I agree this should be dealt with. Even though the people mean well, the result is still cruelty.

  • Horrible. What can we do to help stop this?

  • I wonder if contacting Public Health would be more effective.

  • Humboldtbiologist

    “This is not because the guinea pig hoarder is a bad person. It’s because several hundred guinea pigs are simply too many for any one person (or family) to take care of. It would also be financially impossible for one person to keep this many guinea pigs healthy”

    “Once I realized he had no intention of stopping the breeding process, I stopped helping him relocate the animals.”

    I’m sorry, but someone who is knowingly creating a situation that harms animals is not a good person.

    • Eh, good or bad, hoarders are delusional rather than sadistic. I agree that the result is the same, and I hope they start enforcing the law for the animals’ sake and for the hoarder’s sake.

  • Someone needs to contact the Hoarders show

  • So Guinea pigs are excellent eating. Here is a local healthy alternative to mass farmed beef, pork, chickens and fish being imported into our community to be purchased for consunption.

    I’m sure there are many local travelers that have eaten guinea pig in South America. I don’t see any reason the mass of the hoarded Guineas counldn’t be used in some of the local food kitchens to feed our hungry. Good source of protein.
    Have a big BBQ as a fundraiser for local causes.

  • A $10000 a day abatement notice would probably do the trick.

  • Here I been eating Woodrats that I have to trap. Then little Gpig morsels should be very good. The thing about trapping Woodrats is : it is so much work, I miss alot of meals. I should move into that neighborhood and live like a king, then I might get too fat! Buuuuurrrrrrppppppp

    • I’ve often said if I was staving I would eat a wood rat. The ones I’ve encountered are healthy and live on acorns and such.

  • Not only are the guinea pigs being neglected, but the trolls, too. That’s something I don’t mind seeing.

  • Has anyone else seen A random guinea pig around Eureka? A few months ago, my girl and I were walking the foot path behind the zoo. All of a sudden, right in front of us, an orange guinea pig ran out of the bushes, stopped on the foot path for a few seconds, turned around, and ran back into the bushes. No shit!

  • Just OMFG WTH & SHIT!

  • I hardly think eating sick and unhealthy guinea pigs would be beneficial for anyone. Gross

  • From the book Pigs is pigs.
    Mike Flannery, the Westcote agent of the Interurban Express Company, leaned over the counter of the express office and shook his fist. Mr. Morehouse, angry and red, stood on the other side of the counter, trembling with rage. The argument had been long and heated, and at last Mr. Morehouse had talked himself speechless. The cause of the trouble stood on the counter between the two men. It was a soap box across the top of which were nailed a number of strips, forming a rough but serviceable cage. In it two spotted guinea-pigs were greedily eating lettuce leaves.

    “Do as you loike, then!” shouted Flannery, “pay for thim an’ take thim, or don’t pay for thim and leave thim be. Rules is rules, Misther Morehouse, an’ Mike Flannery’s not goin’ to be called down fer breakin’ of thim.”

    “But, you everlastingly stupid idiot!” shouted Mr. Morehouse, madly shaking a flimsy printed book beneath the agent’s nose, “can’t you read it here-in your own plain printed rates? ‘Pets, domestic, Franklin to Westcote, if properly boxed, twenty-five cents each.'” He threw the book on the counter in disgust. “What more do you want? Aren’t they pets? Aren’t they domestic? Aren’t they properly boxed? What?”

    He turned and walked back and forth rapidly; frowning ferociously.

    Suddenly he turned to Flannery, and forcing his voice to an artificial calmness spoke slowly but with intense sarcasm.

    “Pets,” he said “P-e-t-s! Twenty-five cents each. There are two of them. One! Two! Two times twenty-five are fifty! Can you understand that? I offer you fifty cents.”

    Flannery reached for the book. He ran his hand through the pages and stopped at page sixty four.

    “An’ I don’t take fifty cints,” he whispered in mockery. “Here’s the rule for ut. ‘Whin the agint be in anny doubt regardin’ which of two rates applies to a shipment, he shall charge the larger. The con-sign-ey may file a claim for the overcharge.’ In this case, Misther Morehouse, I be in doubt. Pets thim animals may be, an’ domestic they be, but pigs I’m blame sure they do be, an’ me rules says plain as the nose on yer face, ‘Pigs Franklin to Westcote, thirty cints each.’ An’ Mister Morehouse, by me arithmetical knowledge two times thurty comes to sixty cints.”

    Mr. Morehouse shook his head savagely. “Nonsense!” he shouted, “confounded nonsense, I tell you! Why, you poor ignorant foreigner, that rule means common pigs, domestic pigs, not guinea pigs!”

    Flannery was stubborn.

    “Pigs is pigs,” he declared firmly. “Guinea-pigs, or dago pigs or Irish pigs is all the same to the Interurban Express Company an’ to Mike Flannery. Th’ nationality of the pig creates no differentiality in the rate, Misther Morehouse! ‘Twould be the same was they Dutch pigs or Rooshun pigs. Mike Flannery,” he added, “is here to tind to the expriss business and not to hould conversation wid dago pigs in sivinteen languages fer to discover be they Chinese or Tipperary by birth an’ nativity.”

    Mr. Morehouse hesitated. He bit his lip and then flung out his arms wildly.

    “Very well!” he shouted, “you shall hear of this! Your president shall hear of this! It is an outrage! I have offered you fifty cents. You refuse it! Keep the pigs until you are ready to take the fifty cents, but, by George, sir, if one hair of those pigs’ heads is harmed I will have the law on you!”

    He turned and stalked out, slamming the door. Flannery carefully lifted the soap box from the counter and placed it in a corner. He was not worried. He felt the peace that comes to a faithful servant who has done his duty and done it well.

    Mr. Morehouse went home raging. His boy, who had been awaiting the guinea-pigs, knew better than to ask him for them. He was a normal boy and therefore always had a guilty conscience when his father was angry. So the boy slipped quietly around the house. There is nothing so soothing to a guilty conscience as to be out of the path of the avenger. Mr. Morehouse stormed into the house. “Where’s the ink?” he shouted at his wife as soon as his foot was across the doorsill.

    Mrs. Morehouse jumped, guiltily. She never used ink. She had not seen the ink., nor moved the ink, nor thought of the ink, but her husband’s tone convicted her of the guilt of having borne and reared a boy, and she knew that whenever her husband wanted anything in a loud voice the boy had been at it.

    “I’ll find Sammy,” she said meekly.

    When the ink was found Mr. Morehouse wrote rapidly, and he read the completed letter and smiled a triumphant smile.

    “That will settle that crazy Irishman!” he exclaimed. “When they get that letter he will hunt another job, all right!”

    A week later Mr. Morehouse received a long official envelope with the card of the Interurban Express Company in the upper left corner. He tore it open eagerly and drew out a sheet of paper. At the top it bore the number A6754. The letter was short. “Subject–Rate on guinea-pigs,” it said, “Dr. Sir–We are in receipt of your letter regarding rate on guinea-pigs between Franklin and Westcote addressed to the president of this company. All claims for overcharge should be addressed to the Claims Department.”

    Mr. Morehouse wrote to the Claims Department. He wrote six pages of choice sarcasm, vituperation and argument, and sent them to the Claims Department.

    A few weeks later he received a reply from the Claims Department. Attached to it was his last letter.

    “Dr. Sir,” said the reply. “Your letter of the 16th inst., addressed to this Department, subject rate on guinea- pigs from Franklin to Westcote, ree’d. We have taken up the matter with our agent at Westcote, and his reply is attached herewith. He informs us that you refused to receive the consignment or to pay the charges. You have therefore no claim against this company, and your letter regarding the proper rate on the consignment should be addressed to our Tariff Department.”

    Mr. Morehouse wrote to the Tariff Department. He stated his case clearly, and gave his arguments in full, quoting a page or two from the encyclopedia to prove that guinea-pigs were not common pigs.

    With the care that characterizes corporations when they are systematically conducted, Mr. Morehouse’s letter was numbered, O.K’d, and started through the regular channels. Duplicate copies of the bill of lading, manifest, Flannery’s receipt for the package and several other pertinent papers were pinned to the letter, and they were passed to the head of the Tariff Department.

    The head of the Tariff Department put his feet on his desk and yawned. He looked through the papers carelessly.

    “Miss Kane,” he said to his stenographer, “take this letter. ‘Agent, Westcote, N. J. Please advise why consignment referred to in attached papers was refused domestic pet rates.”‘

    Miss Kane made a series of curves and angles on her note book and waited with pencil poised. The head of the department looked at the papers again.

    “Huh! guinea-pigs!” he said. “Probably starved to death by this time! Add this to that letter: ‘Give condition of consignment at present.'”

    He tossed the papers on to the stenographer’s desk, took his feet from his own desk and went out to lunch.

    When Mike Flannery received the letter he scratched his head.

    “Give prisint condition,” he repeated thoughtfully. “Now what do thim clerks be wantin’ to know, I wonder! ‘Prisint condition, ‘is ut? Thim pigs, praise St. Patrick, do be in good health, so far as I know, but I niver was no veternairy surgeon to dago pigs. Mebby thim clerks wants me to call in the pig docther an’ have their pulses took. Wan thing I do know, howiver, which is they’ve glorious appytites for pigs of their soize. Ate? They’d ate the brass padlocks off of a barn door I If the paddy pig, by the same token, ate as hearty as these dago pigs do, there’d be a famine in Ireland.”

    To assure himself that his report would be up to date, Flannery went to the rear of the office and looked into the cage. The pigs had been transferred to a larger box–a dry goods box.

    “Wan, — two, — t’ree, — four, — five, — six, — sivin, — eight!” he counted. “Sivin spotted an’ wan all black. All well an’ hearty an’ all eatin’ loike ragin’ hippypottymusses. He went back to his desk and wrote.

    “Mr. Morgan, Head of Tariff Department,” he wrote. “Why do I say dago pigs is pigs because they is pigs and will be til you say they ain’t which is what the rule book says stop your jollying me you know it as well as I do. As to health they are all well and hoping you are the same. P. S. There are eight now the family increased all good eaters. P. S. I paid out so far two dollars for cabbage which they like shall I put in bill for same what?”

    Morgan, head of the Tariff Department, when he received this letter, laughed. He read it again and became serious.

    “By George!” he said, “Flannery is right, ‘pigs is pigs.’ I’ll have to get authority on this thing. Meanwhile, Miss Kane, take this letter: Agent, Westcote, N. J. Regarding shipment guinea-pigs, File No. A6754. Rule 83, Gen. eral Instruction to Agents, clearly states that agents shall collect from consignee all costs of provender, etc., etc., required for live stock while in transit or storage. You will proceed to collect same from consignee.”

    Flannery received this letter next morning, and when he read it he grinned.

    “Proceed to collect,” he said softly. “How thim clerks do loike to be talkin’! Me proceed to col- lect two dollars and twinty-foive cints off Misther Morehouse! I wonder do thim clerks know Misther Morehouse? I’ll git it! Oh, yes! ‘Misther Morehouse, two an’ a quarter, plaze.’ ‘Cert’nly, me dear frind Flannery. Delighted!’ Not!”

    Flannery drove the express wagon to Mr. Morehouse’s door. Mr. Morehouse answered the bell.

    “Ah, ha!” he cried as soon as he saw it was Flannery. “So you’ve come to your senses at last, have you? I thought you would! Bring the box in.”

    “I hev no box,” said Flannery coldly. “I hev a bill agin Misther John C. Morehouse for two dollars and twinty-foive cints for kebbages aten by his dago pigs. Wud you wish to pay ut?”

    “Pay– Cabbages– !” gasped Mr. Morehouse. “Do you mean to say that two little guinea-pigs–”

    “Eight!” said Flannery. “Papa an’ mamma an’ the six childer. Eight!”

    For answer Mr. Morehouse slammed the door in Flannery’s face. Flannery looked at the door reproachfully.

    “I take ut the con-sign-y don’t want to pay for thim kebbages,” he said. “If I know signs of refusal, the con-sign-y refuses to pay for wan dang kebbage leaf an’ be hanged to me!”

    Mr. Morgan, the head of the Tariff Department, consulted the president of the Interurban Express Company regarding guinea-pigs, as to whether they were pigs or not pigs. The president was inclined to treat the matter lightly.

    “What is the rate on pigs and on pets?” he asked.

    “Pigs thirty cents, pets twenty-five,” said Morgan.

    “Then of course guinea-pigs are pigs,” said the president.

    “Yes,” agreed Morgan, “I look at it that way, too. A thing that can come under two rates is naturally due to be classed as the higher. But are guinea-pigs, pigs? Aren’t they rabbits?”

    “Come to think of it,” said the president, “I believe they are more like rabbits. Sort of half-way station between pig and rabbit. I think the question is this–are guinea-pigs of the domestic pig family? I’ll ask professor Gordon. He is authority on such things. Leave the papers with me.”

    The president put the papers on his desk and wrote a letter to Professor Gordon. Unfortunately the Professor was in South America collecting zoological specimens, and the letter was forwarded to him by his wife. As the Professor was in the highest Andes, where no white man had ever penetrated, the letter was many months in reaching him. The president forgot the guinea-pigs, Morgan forgot them, Mr. Morehouse forgot them, but Flannery did not. One- half of his time he gave to the duties of his agency; the other half was devoted to the guinea-pigs. Long before Professor Gordon received the president’s letter Morgan received one from Flannery.

    “About them dago pigs,” it said, “what shall I do they are great in family life, no race suicide for them, there are thirty-two now shall I sell them do you take this express office for a menagerie, answer quick.”

    Morgan reached for a telegraph blank and wrote:

    “Agent, Westcote. Don’t sell pigs.”

    He then wrote Flannery a letter calling his attention to the fact that the pigs were not the property of the company but were merely being held during a settlement of a dispute regarding rates. He advised Flannery to take the best possible care of them.

    Flannery, letter in hand, looked at the pigs and sighed. The dry-goods box cage had become too small. He boarded up twenty feet of the rear of the express office to make a large and airy home for them, and went about his business. He worked with feverish intensity when out on his rounds, for the pigs required attention and took most of his time. Some months later, in desperation, he seized a sheet of paper and wrote “160” across it and mailed it to Morgan. Morgan returned it asking for explanation. Flannery replied:

    “There be now one hundred sixty of them dago pigs, for heavens sake let me sell off some, do you want me to go crazy, what.”

    “Sell no pigs,” Morgan wired.

    Not long after this the president of the express company received a letter from Professor Gordon. It was a long and scholarly letter, but the point was that the guinea-pig was the Cava aparoea while the common pig was the genius Sus of the family Suidae. He remarked that they were prolific and multiplied rapidly.

    “They are not pigs,” said the president, decidedly, to Morgan. “The twenty-five cent rate applies.”

    Morgan made the proper notation on the papers that had accumulated in File A6754, and turned them over to the Audit Department. The Audit Department took some time to look the matter up, and after the usual delay wrote Flannery that as he had on hand one hundred and sixty guinea-pigs, the property of consignee, he should deliver them and collect charges at the rate of twenty-five cents each.

    Flannery spent a day herding his charges through a narrow opening in their cage so that he might count them.

    “Audit Dept.” he wrote, when he had finished the count, “you are way off there may be was one hundred and sixty dago pigs once, but wake up don’t be a back number. I’ve got even eight hundred, now shall I collect for eight hundred or what, how about sixty-four dollars I paid out for cabbages.”

    It required a great many letters back and forth before the Audit Department was able to understand why the error had been made of billing one hundred and sixty instead of eight hundred, and still more time for it to get the meaning of the “cabbages.”

    Flannery was crowded into a few feet at the extreme front of the office. The pigs had all the rest of the room and two boys were employed constantly attending to them. The day after Flannery had counted the guinea- pigs there were eight more added to his drove, and by the time the Audit Department gave him authority to collect for eight hundred Flannery had given up all attempts to attend to the receipt or the delivery of goods. He was hastily building galleries around the express office, tier above tier. He had four thousand and sixty-four guinea-pigs to care for! More were arriving daily.

    Immediately following its authorization the Audit Department sent another letter, but Flannery was too busy to open it. They wrote another and then they telegraphed:

    “Error in guinea-pig bill. Collect for two guinea-pigs, fifty cents. Deliver all to consignee.”

    Flannery read the telegram and cheered up. He wrote out a bill as rapidly as his pencil could travel over paper and ran all the way to the Morehouse home. At the gate he stopped suddenly. The house stared at him with vacant eyes. The windows were bare of curtains and he could see into the empty rooms. A sign on the porch said, “To Let.” Mr. Morehouse had moved! Flannery ran all the way back to the express office. Sixty-nine guinea-pigs had been born during his absence. He ran out again and made feverish inquiries in the village. Mr. Morehouse had not only moved, but he had left Westcote. Flannery returned to the express office and found that two hundred and six guinea-pigs had entered the world since he left it. He wrote a telegram to the Audit Department.

    “Can’t collect fifty cents for two dago pigs consignee has left town address unknown what shall I do? Flannery.”

    The telegram was handed to one of the clerks in the Audit Department, and as he read it he laughed.

    “Flannery must be crazy. He ought to know that the thing to do is to return the consignment here,” said the clerk. He telegraphed Flannery to send the pigs to the main office of the company at Franklin.

    When Flannery received the telegram he set to work. The six boys be had engaged to help him also set to work. They worked with the haste of desperate men, making cages out of soap boxes, cracker boxes, and all kinds of boxes, and as fast as the cages were completed they filled them with guinea-pigs and expressed them to Franklin. Day after day the cages of guineapigs flowed in a steady stream from Westcote to Franklin, and still Flannery and his six helpers ripped and nailed and packed–relentlessly and feverishly. At the end of the week they had shipped two hundred and eighty cases of guinea-pigs, and there were in the express office seven hundred and four more pigs than when they began packing them.

    “Stop sending pigs. Warehouse full,” came a telegram to Flannery. He stopped packing only long enough to wire back, “Can’t stop,” and kept on sending them. On the next train up from Franklin came one of the company’s inspectors. He had instructions to stop the stream of guinea-pigs at all hazards. As his train drew up at Westcote station he saw a cattle car standing on the express company’s siding. When he reached the express office he saw the express wagon backed up to the door. Six boys were carrying bushel baskets full of guinea- pigs from the office and dumping them into the wagon. Inside the room Flannery, with’ his coat and vest off, was shoveling guinea-pigs into bushel baskets with a coal scoop. He was winding up the guinea-pig episode.

    He looked up at the inspector with a snort of anger.

    “Wan wagonload more an, I’ll be quit of thim, an’ niver will ye catch Flannery wid no more foreign pigs on his hands. No, sur! They near was the death o’ me. Nixt toime I’ll know that pigs of whaiver nationality is domistic pets–an’ go at the lowest rate. ”

    He began shoveling again rapidly, speaking quickly between breaths.

    “Rules may be rules, but you can’t fool Mike Flannery twice wid the same thrick–whin ut comes to live stock, dang the rules. So long as Flannery runs this expriss office–pigs is pets–an’ cows is pets–an’ horses is pets–an’ lions an’ tigers an’ Rocky Mountain goats is pets–an’ the rate on thim is twinty-foive cints.”

    He paused long enough to let one of the boys put an empty basket in the place of the one he had just filled. There were only a few guinea-pigs left. As he noted their limited number his natural habit of looking on the bright side returned.

    “Well, annyhow,” he said cheerfully, “’tis not so bad as ut might be. What if thim dago pigs had been elephants!”

  • See also Walt Disney movie Pigs is pigs on Tube.

  • What a strange thing to hoard.Ive seen cat hoarders but guinea pigs….anyways that should be taken care of by animal control …kyms weird and she smells faintly of cabbage, la-la luh laaaah

  • The hoarder, who is obviously lacking in intelligence to continue allowing the guineas to breed, not properly feeding them nor providing vet care, needs to receive the bills for their rescue, treatment, etc. What consequences are being enforced to get that moron’s attention??? The whole situation is disgusting!

  • The letter to RHBB is supposed to address the suffering animals, no? That seems unlikely given that the writer is getting no love from the ACO. And, respondents are cracking jokes or posting a story featuring guinea pigs. It’s sad, they are good pets but they need to be socialized or they aren’t friendly. Public Health should be contacted. Have vets write letters. This person will just keep doing this. It’s awful.

    • I think Eureka animal control is primarily tasked with apprehending loose dogs and investigating bite incidents. I don’t think they have many powers over animals that are indoors, and they’d probably need a warrant to enter if the owner won’t let them in on his own.

  • Disgusting supervisors.

    Hope this guy doesn’t own one of the taco wagons I’ve been eating at them a lot lately. Tastes just like carnitas!!!!

  • Many mentally ill situations in eureka. Who in the right mind does crap like this?

  • I feel bad for the guinea pig man that this woman keeps trolling his life. This has been going on for years now, animal control did what they needed to and now he is within all codes and regulations. If his family wants to have a bunch of guinea pigs on his land how does that harm you? After animal control came and removed his femails I went and got a pig from him. No mites, no parasites, no infections. He happily gives them away free to people who will love them. I have even seen him hand pushing his mower around town for fresh grass for them. While this woman sends these letters all over the place and harasses the family non stop. I dont understand how someone could want to break someones family down so badly.

    • Suckered by MH 2helpPigs

      Unfortunately it is a bad situation made worse by this lady (who I know), and is obsessed with her rescue mission. The hypocrisy of the situation rests in her ferver to be kind to these animals and save them, yet treat other animals (pets of friends) and humans with disdain. He needs to get a restraining order on her, it may be the only way to stop her from harrassing him and his family.
      SHE really needs to seek professional help, and save herself from her crazy obsession and compulsions, get her own life together, then maybe worry about others and how they live.

      • Animals rights activists will always receive scorn from people who do not understand! At least this lady is trying to bring attention to a really disturbing situation.

        The guinea pig hoarder is also a hoarder of regular items and his neighbors have made many complaints to the city. The whole place should probably be condemned. The sooner the guinea pigs can be removed, the better for everyone!

  • This situation has been going on for years. I took a guinea pig from his house and it died within a few days, which was so sad. It’s a matter of neglect on many different levels.

    • My daughter bought a guinea pig from Petco as we did back in Washington State. Hers died at 14 days with her; ours 7 years later. My daughter was a vet tech. There can be signs of something wrong that cannot be seen or noticed until too late. Cinnamon was certainly a healthy youngster that Richard brought over to visit with me on New Year’s Day when he came to pick up apples from us that came off our tree. If Cavie mommas are unhealthy, their babies are not healthy. Cinnamon was bright eyed , social, in good physical condition, with a good weight for her age. Don’t believe everything you are told (especially 2 years out of date, pictures and info) from someone who maybe fond of the limelight and attention she may be craving!

  • I’ve been aware of the unsanitary condition s of this guinea pig hoard for 3 years. I personally rescued 9 pigs from there. Animal control wouldn’t turn their backs on this case if it were cats being hoarded with visible injuries . What if the species involved was rat? There are 100s of rodents living loose in this house. It’s sad for all involved. Animal control check it out.

  • Nearly everyone is outraged over a situation of which they are intentionally misinformed. Few have a perspective that includes the experience of actual witness. All find it easy to see what is wrong with the picture as provided. The truth is not nearly so entertaining. There are guinea pigs, that have no concern for people but that they provide food and comfort each day. One person in particular goes to every effort and expense doing so. Another does little but make their life difficult, whipping up outrage in an arguably psychotic distortion of facts.

    This results not just in poor opinion, but obligatory bother for officialdom, tires slashed, and an inability to convey means of responsible ownership by example to to others, for a creature entirely misunderstood and underappreciated for qualities that present when allowed more than a cage. Animal control is current, familiar and satisfied with the environment, which includes three types of hay, half the number and twice the room, compared to the brief interim Mary “worked” at the location.

    Years ago, the LA shelter achieved fame and yes, wealth, taking the most salable portion to profit from their nonprofit. Unsurprisingly by the same method of inflating numbers, selective representation, sympathy and outrage all the way to the bank. Some find such pleasure in attention, it makes honest account easily dispensed with. But there is also money in it. 35 bucks a pop at their shelter, and you have to take two. No matter how it is represented, what it makes is an intractable problem of what could otherwise be a desirable situation for those actually involved.

    Public opinion is the sum total of difficulty in the state of affairs. All the righteous morality of a howling mob presents itself in this forum that is as aggrieved as it is misinformed. News services once played up the extraordinary situation in terms to attract the greatest attention, but did little to inform of the great good fortune and happiness expressed by the creatures themselves.

    Imagine some working night and day, sparing no effort or expense to achieve favorable outcome and suitable care on daily basis years on end, as personal friends that they know and love. Just as others do nothing beyond threaten and abuse their efforts in waging a PR campaign with evangelical fervor, attempting to sway the community at large toward questionable ends. Welcome to the world of public opinion. You will find any who are about their actual business, spend as little as possible of it here. This makes them vulnerable to those with little else to concern themselves, but so it goes. They make do with the difference between what is said and done.

    There is use in unremitting exaggeration some go to. But it is not of benefit to animals. If anything, it is one more example of how many can be manipulated, when others find reason to dispense with truth. Damned if I know what it could be.

  • Animal control is stellar. Proactive, compassionate, sensible and solution oriented. Sometimes all you have, to defend the rights of your self and animals. Many look to authority, to solve their problems. Would they trusted them with it sufficiently to let them do the job in their estimation, instead of that in poor opinions held.

    We do them no favors, for not hiding our guinea pigs, nor love for them. What they must suffer, is to be at the beck and call of the entire populace, no matter how misinformed.

    But, here you go. Read the comments, find fault if you must. We find happiness in their being that enhances ours.

  • This is a sad situation all the way around. It sounds like the hoarder needs to receive professional help and in the meantime the guinea pigs need to be rescued. Allowing these animals to live under this condition is cruel and just plan unnecessary. This city needs to do better.

  • I’d like to let you know that my father is not the only person living in this household. It is also me and my mother, Annabel Temple-Furman.
    I do the basic salon-care for all of the guinea pigs. That includes washing, hair cutting, and nail care. I cannot look after absolutely every one, but I do in fact try my best.

    People have been targeting my father for months if not over a year now. We have dealt with slander, denigration, and misrepresentation by over half of the community. This not only puts a bad reputation on my father, but everyone else in this family.

    My dad did also try to contact you multiple times, of which you seemed to quote otherwise in the paper. It seems as if he does not get a say in what is being targeted towards him. Therefore in the most part, there are false claims of which my father has no gainsay.
    He is my father and I would appreciate if you could be more knowledgeable to him as a human being, as well as the relatives of my father you are planning to affect by writing this paper and putting it out towards the public.

    Please understand that my father, Richard, is trying his hardest to cope with this situation. We have been putting our own resources towards attempts to diminish the population of the animals that we have, but we cannot be successful with the repute that a large portion of the community has against him.
    Targeting my father only makes this situation worse for not just him but my entire family.
    Saskia, the lady who has campaigned against my father and put a public spotlight on him happens to not be as generous as stated. In fact, we did have quite a negative outcome from letting her on the property.

    Of course there are a large amount of them passing away. But if you do the math properly, then of course there will be a larger number of them dying compared to having 10-20. It happens more often because there is a larger population. Not necessarily because of the general “situation” of my father.

    Stop targeting him.

    • Anya,
      your family should be left in peace, maybe you could try getting a protective order against who ever is trying to harass you.


    • Anya,
      You are an enabler and an apologist. This behavior in you father and yourself is not acceptable. This did not happen in a vacuum and it is disgraceful that you should feel justified in attacking people trying to defend animal rights.
      Think about your actions.

      • Way to prove she’s right about making the situation worse.

        • I object!
          You are clearly saying that if these practices were left to their own devices that animal cruelty would not have occurred?
          You are insane! Animal rights advocates, and the general public have a responsibility to step up and speak out to stop injustice. Animal cruelty did occur whether intentional or not.
          If you are being abused or mistreated I hope someone will come forward to put a stop to it.

      • I’m not going to think about my actions because I have no reason to do so. I am defending my father for the harassment he has received due to this being publicised in such an extortionate manner, as well as the photos being used from over a year ago.
        I am not being abused nor mistreated and you are in no place to make those claims as you have not been personally made aware of MY situation. My parents take care of me just fine.

        It is not disgraceful to defend my father. I have not attacked any singular person by name.
        I feel justified because my parents are the people that raised me. My father is very loving and takes care of me every day. Same goes for my mother. I cannot imagine what I would be without them.
        So, of course I’ll yearn towards taking a stance towards those who harass my father when they are not made aware of the entire situation, but instead in 5 paragraphs from a random stranger that just so happens to not be my dad.

        Dead argument.

  • Absurd and tragic

    The guinea pig man and family think seem to have the situation under control, which is tragic. Its quite simple to stop breeding guinea pigs: you just have to separate the males and females. I don’t think there is any real intention of stopping the process, or it would have already happened.

    Hoarders are not able to stop without help. Someone needs to step in and help this family, or this situation will continue indefinitely.

    Meanwhile, the family is doing the species an extreme disservice by continuing to overpopulate the area and allowing all of the disease to continue. Once a guinea pig has mites, it’s almost impossible to get rid of them. Thanks to the inability of this family to get their situation under control, every single person who removes a guinea pig from this house will have to deal with mites and/or ringworm for the remainder of the guinea pig’s life. Not to mention all of the other injuries the guinea pigs have because they fight each other.

    Guinea pigs are called “pigs” for a reason. They produce an INCREDIBLE amount of waste. All they do all day is eat and poop. This situation is not only tragic, it’s completely unsanitary.

    If this family truly loved guinea pigs, they would stop the out of control breeding.

    • Guinea pigs themselves are unsanitary. You can say that to a person with just one, or two of them. We have been going all out in our attempts to better the situation.
      “from the alleged hoarding situation in 2017.”
      I would appreciate that you view the last few parts of that thoroughly. By all means, I appreciate your concern, and yes there are too many. But we can’t get ‘rid’ of them properly without euthanising them. Certainly, I would hold it in high regard that you understand we are more considerate to animals than that. There is inability. And that is because of the reputation people such as Mary Hann gives along with her general output along with the emancipation of photos from two years ago. This of course, disallows very, very many people to volunteer to help.

      Yes, mites & any other kind of sickness is hard to rid of. But that goes for every small animal.
      I’ve said this once and I will say it again. If there is a large abundance of animals, then surely you will see a lot more of them becoming sick, passing away, etc. It is simple math.
      My father is not “breeding” and has no reason to do so.

      With your comprehension of the situation of guinea pigs in a large abundance, I have hopes that you also have cognizance that environments such as ours change. We are bettering it, but it will be a slow process. We do have high hopes and we appreciate that the harassment stops in order to bring us some better energy about this.
      My father, as well as my mother and myself, have taken a realisation of all of this thanks to people such as you (though not in appreciation to the disputes and attitudes we have gotten on certain days), we are able to make change of this.

  • Wow! Accused based on two pictures from 2017! Unbelievable!

  • It may be just the coffee talking, but I have a good feeling about this. What the city wants is for people to have every means to coexist peacefully. Animal ordinance can have more to do with allowing freedom of more than the city’s, at being entitled to remove bones of contention.

    Limiting how long and often some may obsess over what is not in evidence or any are privy to would have more to do with resolving effects of the actual problem everyone perceives. Currently, good judgment fills this gap. Fortunately, proper authority is in possession of it. But there are crazy people at either end of the spectrum. We are pig nuts. I am not sure what to call Mary, but the effect is everlasting torment in her attempts to find threat for us in a righteous certainty, to the unending bother of officials. I should welcome laws that protect everyone from each other. It could allow the peace that lets people care for animals properly and prevent persecution by those who find motive to engender fear and uncertainty in those protecting them.

    Any should be in favor of answers providing reasonable limits, especially for those that cannot be considered reasonable. But some question is in who and what they are. Should it depend on a war of opinion, or a measurable effect on others? Measurable or debatable, taking the welfare of animals into account quickly finds a subjective interpretation of what that is. Some find purpose in waging battle for their cause and rallying others to it, but they do no favors to animals or people in misrepresenting truth. Due to efforts of animal control going largely unappreciated, it is far more common than many know. The greater balance of their efforts go toward problems people have among themselves, concerning their differences of view in duty and care. Everyone should be afforded some protections from those on both ends of the spectrum. They especially need it from one another. The vast majority between should have a capacity to be about their business without having to worry about the measure of good sense that is applied. Without it, there may be some concern it will be applied to them. City council members are right. Some unequivocal standards may deserve redress in the Eureka animal code to ensure EPDAC has less to mediate in matters of opinion. It would give means to clarify what is more to do with the welfare of everyone. Including animals.

  • My daughter holds me in high regard, for not destroying her animals to please others. It breaks my heart to say she does not know me quite so well as she thinks, but all the more to see her up here trying to defend me from the callous and flippant. It is literally life and death, to a thirteen year old girl. To you lot, an evening’s entertainment.

    • It is not entertainment.
      What I feel is disgust.
      What you and your daughter should feel is shame and remorse. I see no contrition.
      In what world do you live?

      • The secret to our world is not that we speak to animals, but that we listen to them. The Stellar Jays, the Talking Robins. Brown sparrows, an amazing array of wrens, all come on the premise of food provided by way of guinea pigs. The compost attracts their habitation, they come for the wealth of worms and insects that aid the natural decay with a reminiscent barnyard odor as they scratch it apart.

        They speak among themselves of something I cannot sense, I go to the back and stand looking out over the greenery into the taller trees across the way. Wait, expect no thing. The hawk drops his nerve and stoops back through the darkness of trees to a lesser clime.

        Animals support us, in our home at edge of wild and town. They say what is, if we listen. They support our pigs, with their warning and caution. It remains for us to hear.

        Now, I listen to you.

        Great effort has been made to characterize us as hoarders of animals, which we find hard to reconcile with a willingness to freely give any the number they wish. But the truth remains that few care to have them. Those that might are more liable to be utterly convinced that ours have to do with disease and disfigurement to such extent that we go out and look in light of their view. Regardless, we are obliged to see them as liability. Assertions convey more readily than evidence. We need surrender them for practical reasons. Not their expense, nor the life it brings us, but to appease the sensibilities of others. They threaten a pleasant home in ways that demand we consider the price for being left in peace. There is no other bone of contention any have had with us over the years, letting them have it seems the only means to being let alone. There is no attributing who slashes tires, as is doubtless intended. But we get the message. We are not safe.

        The daughter is desperately trying to put pigs in my lap, giving names and remarking at their softness of fur in attempts to personalize them. But we are the only ones privy to matters as they are. Others have certainty in their view that we should be held accountable. So, I am willing. To account for each, bagged and frozen in all finality, so they may feel justice as done and all matters laid to rest. If some will leave us be on this condition, we pay the price. We all will.

        Or do you have other suggestion? It is our last resort, to cut ourselves away from the extended family we have created in a last ditch effort at self preservation. To remain here as targets for abuse risks a delicate balance to outrage and actions none will account or admit to, but they occur nonetheless. We had not imagined such things from our perspective, but it seems some have their own. “Abomination”, is the cry. So, it is. Our existence came on condition that all or nothing can be and so should. So had theirs, we allowed. None are unwelcome, all are given the best opportunity their life affords. They scrap and scrounge and try their utmost with good humor and willful disposition. We adore their aggravation and endearment. But the price is too high.

        Suggestions mean nothing. Advice matters little. We have tried everything in means, done our best, but some find we deserve worse. Our only option is to disappear them and attempt the same for ourselves. There is no place for them to go but away. Not even garbage goes truly away, but somewhere as an inanimate thing. Guinea pigs require a home. Take it, they have nothing, soon are nothing. They are something to us. To others, something wrong. We have tried to sit quietly, then attempted to speak loudly. Nothing quells the righteousness that finds cause for fault in what they imagine. I imagine they are right. It must be that we are wrong. It makes what we must do correct. I pray for their satisfaction.

        It is not that we speak to animals, but that we listen to them. It is they who have the more there is to say.

        • It is stupid that should write (bad) poetry in response to criticism for committing animal cruelty.
          Society says NO.

        • Mr. Furman,

          Interestingly, I hear you. I think you know your method of communicating is hard for everyone to follow, most will not read your words when written in such style.

          It seems you are open, now, to finding solutions.

          I couldn’t bare to kill hundreds of creatures for any reason.

          But the burden you have is the burden you built, too.

          It seems the best solution is to Hire help for the pigs, and create an environment that appeases your neigbors, while waiting for the pack to naturally perish. No new pigs.

          Make it an appropriate habitat for animals and neigbors. If you can’t, then you understand that your in over your head in many ways.

  • ~we’re living in unchartered waters. “Society says NO” -idk?

  • No one says kill them

    Oh my goodness, you guys, why are you stuck on the idea that anyone actually wants these guinea pigs killed? Other than the trolls who keep talking about eating them, of course.

    We’re just asking that Richard stop breeding them. Period. There are many people who would help him relocate the excess guinea pigs. Obviously an agency already tried to do that. Animal Control is in the process of doing that, as well (though it is taking them longer than the community would wish). But the agreement was that Richard would stop breeding guinea pigs. He is clearly not able to do that.

    Its not ok to keep breeding tons of animals when you can’t give them all the attention and care they need. This is the reason so many animals end up in shelters (and sometimes euthanized) in the first place. Just stop breeding them, then no one has to worry about killing them or not.

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