Purchase Marshall's Miracle DVD on Amazon
Purchase Marshall the Miracle Dog Book

On the Set: Day 9

Posted on Jun 11, 2014

What is animal hoarding?

As we film the hoarding scenes, it is extremely important to note what hoarding exactly is and how it effects the hoarder as well as the animals involved. In 82 and Counting, Animal Planet came across a woman hoarding more than 80 animals including dogs and birds. This woman did not nourish these dogs or treat them in the way they deserved to be treated, however she was extremely attached to them as a result of her mental illness. One of these animals was Marshall who incurred a leg infection from a dog bite which resulted in the loss of his front paw. She also stole some of these dogs. This leads to the question of why. If this woman could not properly care for these dogs, why did she feel the need to acquire more and more? This is because hoarding is an addiction and a serious mental illness where a person feels a strong connection to the animals he or she hoards and is unable to let them go. The woman not only saw her dogs’ conditions deteriorate but she also saw her marriages and family life deteriorate as well. She was divorced three times and her last marriage ended as a direct result of her animal hoarding. This condition had a serious impact on her life as well as the lives of those around her.

As Lauren Holly acts this role in Marshall, it is important to remember that although it is a movie, conditions like these actually do exist and this problem is extremely prevalent in animal abuse cases. Through the Animal Planet segment on hoarding as well as this film, animal rescuers attempt to highlight this issue and show that it is a serious mental condition. By realizing it as so,we can work to eliminate this issue and to spread awareness to younger generations.

animal hoarding

Above: the home where we are filming the hoarding scenes