Mayukh Saha
Mayukh Saha
April 26, 2024 ·  2 min read

Animal Found By Police Has Worst Case Of Matted Fur

In late 2016, an abandoned and a neglected cat was discovered by an animal activist. Its fur was so matted that it had turned into dreadlocks. The rescue workers then worked overtime to shave off two pounds of the fur. The cat had deteriorated to this condition after her owner was admitted into a nursing home as they suffered from Alzheimer’s disease. The Animal Rescue League Shelter and Wildlife Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania posted pictures of the miserable cat. 

Image Credits: Animal Rescue League Shelter & Wildlife Center

The center stated, “This poor cat was brought to our clinic yesterday after her elderly had to move to a nursing home. She suffered from severe matting, the likes of which had been neglected for years. Our medical team shaved off the pounds of matted fur from her body and needless to say, this cat is feeling so much better now!” The cat, Hidey, was rescued by Paul Russell, a distant relative of the cat’s owner. Russel had also rescued another cat after the elderly man had become too sick to care for his cats. 

Animal Rescue Workers Found the Cat With Huge Matted fur That Resembled Dreadlocks

Speaking to Dodo, Russel mentioned, “When they put him in the nursing home, I thought, ‘Hey, he has a cat.’ The house was still open, so I went down and left some food for the car until we figured out what we’re going to do. Then somebody mentioned that he had a second cat. So I started searching around, and suddenly this huge creature darts out from under the bed and runs down to the cellar, and I thought, ‘What was that?’ At first I thought it was a cat who had a blanket draped over her that she dragged down. But now- it turned out to be Hidey. She hid down in the corner of the cellar. I’m down there with a flashlight looking- it was almost like a horror movie. And I found her hunkering in the corner. Probably very scared. Probably in a lot of pain.”

Animal rescue workers who saw the cat couldn’t believe the matted fur that had accumulated over the last few years. They believed this came about since the cat had become too fat to groom herself properly. Deciding to shave it all off, the workers put her under anesthesia to shave her dreadlocks off safely. The shelter put out a statement that read, “She will be cared for by a distant relative of her previous owner and finally have a chance at a happy and healthy life. Please remember to not only check on the elderly in your community, but also check on their animals to prevent instances like this from happening in the future.


    1. It’s Octo-puss! Neglected cat’s fur got so matted it turned into DREADLOCKS – but look at her now!.” Mirror. Chris Baynes. December 22, 2016.
    2. ‘It looked like dreadlocks all over:’ Rescue workers shave pounds of hair off badly matted cat.” WTAE. Janelle Hall . December 16, 2016.