When Danny Burke first stopped by Christina Bamaca’s house in the Little Village neighborhood of Chicago to drop off cats Fluffy and Rocky from their spay/neuter appointments, he had no idea what he’d stumbled upon. There was a Maltese, a cocker spaniel, a German shepherd, a St. Bernard, and as he looked around, the dogs just kept appearing. Was it a hoarding situation? A breeding operation?
Back when Matt Piccone worked for a cable company in Rochester, N.Y., his job was to disconnect people who were stealing service. “I was in and out of 200 yards a day unannounced,” he says. In those yards and back alleys, he found more than illegal cable hookups: He saw dogs tied up all day, animals in need of veterinary care and stray cats struggling to care for their litters.