Muskegon County landlord plans to fix house once overrun by 1K rats

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Jul 7, 2015 in Rat News | Subscribe

UPDATE: Woman who ran Critter Cafe charged with felony animal neglect

FRUITPORT TOWNSHIP, MI – The landlord of the house once overrun by more than 1,000 rats says he’s going to try to fix the place up.

Fruitport Township’s Dale Carr said July 7 that the house at 5818 Airline Road is now rat-free.

“I haven’t seen one in two weeks,” Carr said.

Carr said he repaired one wire that was chewed by rats and the house is waiting on an electrical inspection so other repairs can move forward.

The township building official said at a recent meeting that a demolition permit had been pulled for the building, but Carr said that permit was only so that he could tear down interior drywall.

The house was earlier condemned by Fruitport Township as a dangerous building unfit for human occupancy after being overrun by more than 1,000 domestic rats.

Carr’s former tenant, Christine Lea Bishop, ran an animal rescue operation, Critter Café Rescue, at the house.

The population of rats originated with a cage of domestic or pet rats that was left outside the building sometime during the winter, Bishop has said. She fed the rats and tried to get them birth control but the population spiraled out of control.

Carr said he would have the home disinfected and treated with chemicals in order to remove the bacteria and smell. He then would hire a drywall contractor and fix the home to make it livable again.

“He’s eliminated the rats from the house completely,” said Fruitport Township Supervisor Brian Werschem.

Werschem said he didn’t know where the inspections stood – the Township contracts out its inspection services to Michigan Township Services. But he said that Carr can keep the house if he’s able to make it livable once again.

“That’s always been the case,” he said.

The Fruitport Township Zoning Board of Appeals June 22 revoked a special zoning variance that would have made it theoretically possible for Bishop to re-open the Critter Café Rescue in the building.

Carr said in any case, he’s unlikely to take Bishop back as a tenant. He’s spent more than $20,000 on the building since she left.

“The only way I’d rent to her is if she paid for the fixes,” he said. “I think it’s over her head at this point.”

Article source: http://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/index.ssf/2015/07/muskegon_county_landlord_plans.html

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