Florida woman banned from owning cats after 102 are removed from her home

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No moar kittens.

There are cat ladies, and then there are cat ladies, and Diana Darnaby is the latter. Last summer, animal services removed102 kitties from Darnaby's home in Summerfield, Florida, and on Wednesday judge Thomas Thompson did cats everywhere a favor when he ruled that, under a local statute, she's hereby forbidden from owning any more of them, ever again. The herd was seized on July 29, and 60 were euthanized owing to severe cases of worms, conjunctivitis, and upper-respiratory infections; the rest were taken to Marion County Animal Services, where they were vaccinated and given antibiotics.

Darnaby toldthe Ocala Star Banner that she did "the best she could" with the cats and spent "every second" taking care of them. "They are charging me with a felony for being a forced caregiver," she said. "I'm just really appalled." According to Darnaby, the county had required her to keep the cats on her property, but officials say there's no record of such a situation.

Darnaby represented herself in court, and she started off at a steep disadvantage — apparently, she'd faced two prior counts of cat hoarding (yes, that is a thing). In 2009, 75 cats were removed from the Darnabys' home, leaving one dog, four birds, and a kitten. She was convicted Thursday in a civil trial and forced to turn over nine more cats she'd accumulated since July; a trial on criminal charges of animal cruelty lies ahead. "The time for having way too many cats has passed in Marion County," Thompson said during the hearing. He's no Wanda Gág fan, that's for sure.


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