More than 150 cats were found at a Madera County ranch home after the owner died last week.
Now, animal control officers are trying to find homes for the animals.
When deputies arrived at a home on Highway 41, they found the 58-year-old man lying in the backyard, said Kirsten Gross, Madera County's animal control director.
Deputies were unable to immediately get to him, though, because a pit bull was guarding his body.
Animal control personnel were called in to assist, sheriff's spokeswoman Erica Stuart said, and they found 161 animals: 7 dogs and 154 cats.
"This case is in the gray area when it comes to hoarding," because the home was set up like an animal rescue facility, Gross said.
For the number of animals at the home, they were mostly in good condition, Gross said.
"A lot of the cats were fat and sassy," Gross said. "There were a lot of unhappy cats when we tried to catch them."
On Friday, 10 cats in critical condition were taken to the Madera County Animal Shelter where they were put down, Gross said.
Forty-five of the cats were relocated Monday to the Cat House on the Kings in Parlier, where they are up for adoption.
The rest of the animals are available for adoption at the Madera County Animal Shelter. All are spayed, neutered and vaccinated.
Stuart said the man appeared to die of natural causes.
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