Animals Often Forgotten as Victims of Foreclosure


Animals often forgotten as victims of foreclosure

Like many other South Floridians, Madeleine J. Calder was crushed when she lost her 5-acre ranch in Palm Beach County to foreclosure. But she hadn’t counted on also losing her most prized possessions: six ostriches, named Rhett Butler, Miss Scarlett, Bob, Gallagher Bird, Ken Doll and Little Bit.

Calder last saw the small herd of ostriches featured in national and local stories on ostrich breeding when she moved out of her Blue Heaven Ostrich Ranch in Loxahatchee. She left the ostriches, some of which she had nurtured for 21 years, with plans to find a new place for them to stay.

But before she could claim them, Calder says, they disappeared — and no one will tell her where they are.

She’s been fighting to get them back ever since filing several lawsuits, the latest in September. “We’ve been together through everything, those birds and me,” Calder said.

The ongoing foreclosure crisis has forced some homeowners to leave pets and livestock behind. Dogs are the most common, but horses, cattle, pigs, goats, rabbits, turtles and even fish have been left as well. Broward and Palm Beach County deputies serving eviction notices also have reported encountering the more exotic Chinchillas, llamas, emus and snakes.

“You never know what you’re going to walk into,” said Capt. David Walesky, spokesman for Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control. He once found 56 animals — including a box turtle — during an eviction.

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3 Responses to “Animals Often Forgotten as Victims of Foreclosure”
  1. Sarah says:

    Animals are important, another tragedy provided by the Bankster class. They don’t care about tragedy however, broken and destroyed families can barely afford to take care of themselves much less their animals, an extended part of their family.
    And even more ironically, homeless animals are sometimes more important than homeless humans. Let’s be honest about how perverted this is. We all give money if we can to help animals, but where on TV, for example, do you see ads to donate to help the homeless?
    Law enforcement in particular has incentive to enforce animal cruelty, but when it comes to humans, that cruetly is just a “civil” issue, since the wealthy need to kick people hard and will use “the law” as just such a weapon. Dogs, both kinds, need shelter.

  2. This seems to be a coming trend leave your animals behind.Wow I was homeless and had 2 cats and a dog and managed to keep them with me until we found a house.We were homeless for 1year and 4 mo.Never left them behind and wouldn’t go anywhere they could not go.Next thing that will happen is people will start leaving thier kids behind.Yes it is hard to do but not immpossible.Can never imagine leaving any of my babies behind.

  3. Cabinetmaniac says:

    She should be charged with abandonment.

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