Cats taken from Holts Summit home

Animal rescue volunteers help remove cats from a Holts Summit home on Monday, February 18, 2013.

Two Holts Summit residents are facing multiple charges after authorities took 17 cats from their Nieman Road home Monday.

Heather Skelton has been charged with two counts of unlicensed operation of a kennel and two counts of animal at large, while Preston Campbell has been charged with two counts of unlicensed operation of a kennel.

The cats, all with ear mites and worms, have been treated and were otherwise healthy.

Neighbors filed complaints last year, prompting an investigation by the Holts Summit Police Department. Animal rescue volunteers began removing the animals from the home at about 9 a.m. Monday.

A local shelter has agreed to help the cats get adopted after they have been cleared by a veterinarian.

The owners of the residence were not arrested, although a summons was issued. They face charges for operating an unlicensed kennel, with their next appearance in Holts Summit Municipal Court scheduled for Wednesday, February 20, at 1:30 p.m.

Jennifer Tergin of Wild Thing - Feral Feline Fix said several other cats are still at the house. The owners are keeping some, while others are "too old to take to the shelter, or (are) in various stages of pregnancy/nursing."

Authorities said as many as 40 cats were in the home before the 17 were removed.