84 animals seized from North Port home; woman arrested

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A North Port woman has been arrested after deputies say they found her emaciated cat sleeping in its own excrement in her home. 

Deputies were called to the woman's home on Granada Drive after a complaint came in about possible animal abuse on the property.

The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office arrested a 55-year-old Shirley Ann Duncan and impounded 55 cats, 23 mice, three ferrets, and two dogs from her home.

The sheriff's office says Animal Services Officers first went to her home on April 9. When they talked to Duncan, officers say they noticed one cat, named Furby, was "emaciated, in distress, and had fur matted with urine and feces."

Officers say Duncan claimed the cat was sick but did not have proof of any veterinary care.

Officers took Furby to an animal hospital for medical treatment but, Furby had to be euthanized "due to the animal’s suffering."

The other animals were impounded on Monday and Duncan was arrested for aggravated cruelty to animals and abandonment.

Duncan was taken to the Sarasota County Jail and released Tuesday morning on $2,000 bond.

All the animals remain in the custody of Animal Services as the investigation continues.