A California woman collected more than 300 rats as her pets and with them in her van.
A woman—identified by the San Diego Union-Tribune as Carla—says she started off with just two rats before the rodents quickly began to multiply inside her vehicle. Eventually, she got up to 320 rats that clawed into the van's upholstery, seats, and sometimes ventured outside the vehicle. This prompted several community residents to file complaints about Carla and her pets. San Diego Humane Society officers responded to the scene in hopes to control the situation.
"They could tell immediately that it was a huge amount [of rats]," Capt. Danee Cook said. "They were living out of the van, coming and going."
Despite the damage done to the van, Cook said that the rats were not neglected or abused. Carla expressed remorse for allowing the situation with her rats to get out of hand. She was willing and ready to hand them over to the authorities.
"She was feeding all of them, had water for all of them," Cook said. "This was not a cruelty case—this was a relinquishment, an owner asking for help."
The Humane Society spent multiple days removing rats from "every crevice" of the vehicle. Of the 320 rats they found, 140 have been put up for adoption. Most of the collected rats were also pregnant, so more rats will be available for adoption once they give birth.