Bernie the Hoarder

Bernie on his mat

(photo by me) 

Hoarding. An issue many of us have personal experience with or know of through reality TV shows like Hoarders or Confessions: Animal Hoarders.

Books have been written and films have been made about famous hoarders like Homer and Langley Collyer and Long Island socialites Edith Bouvier Beale (“Little Edie”) and her mother Edith Ewing Bouvier (“Big Edie”) .


(The Collyer Brothers home, 1947 –


(“Little Edie” –

He might not be rich or famous, but Bernie the Cat may have succumbed to their ranks as well. He is neither a compulsive shopper (so we have not gone bankrupt, thank goodness),  nor does he save reams of old newspapers and other paraphernalia, but does like things.

At first we noticed the shoes. He would lay his head on my sneakers or put his nose inside them, often falling asleep this way.


Then it was my purse and duffel bag.

Next came the red blanket, which he talks to and drags around the floor in his teeth and kneads with his claws.


Once I found his scratch mat, toy alligator and toy bird wrapped inside the blanket as he was dragging it. Alarming!

Last week we found him laying on Lorin’s computer apparatus and extension cords in the basement, seemingly taking possession of them.

He likes to build a fort consisting of my purse, duffel bag and the red blanket. He is not happy when one of his objects is taken away.

Is it time for an intervention?

Hopefully, with love, support and patience, we will get through this as a family, and not have to seek professional help.

Have any of you experienced hoarding with your non-human companions?


16 thoughts on “Bernie the Hoarder

  1. Squeaky keeps taking my girlfriend’s pencils, pens, markers and paint brushes, which she hides in various places in the apartment. Michele will often not realize that something is missing until she needs it to work on a piece of art. At that point we ask Squeaky where she put them, but that cat refuses to divulge her latest hiding place. Between this, and her trying to snatch food from our other cat’s bowl, she has earned the nickname “Sneaky Squeaky” 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My guess is it stems from the same sense of insecurity that drives human hoarders. Keeping these familiar things nearby reassures him somehow. My daughter’s “blankie” served that purpose until, several years after she was born. Eventually unraveled to a little patch that she still kept with her like an amulet. She’s 23 now, and for all I know she still has a few threads in a locket near her at all times.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Matt, I believe you are right. He seems to have security issues. We don’t know what he experienced before we got him, but he spent a lot of time in the pound and then at a pet store waiting to be adopted.


  3. Mr. M hates it when I put boxes in recycling and Purrseidon can get very territorial over her toy baskets. However, IMHO, Rom won our family’s hoarding award.
    He was born in April & his first Christmas was a disaster for the Christmas glass ornaments… we were forced to buy red satin balls, which didn’t break when they went bouncing… Rom LOVED those balls (Purrseidon had a similar reaction to the jingle bells), but Rom wins because he managed to keep a red satin ball hidden, but accessible – never figured out how he did that for 16 YEARS … if Purrsiedon, who will be 2 in October, breaks Rom’s record I shall give her the hoarding award.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh sweet Bernie, shame on your human fur outing you. MOL Me’s been known to horde da yeowww toys. Mommy’s furst ever Service cat horded money. You’ll have to ask ’bout dat sometime. MOL

    Luv ya’

    Dezi and Raena

    Liked by 1 person

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