The Abandoned Cat Lady House
The abandoned cat lady house in Ontario that was originally discovered by me in the summer of 2012, it would come to be one of the most sought after abandoned homes in the province.
February 2016 – The Abandoned Cat Lady House burned down on the evening of Monday February 1st/Early Tuesday February 2nd – News Link. Update at bottom of page.
December 2017 – Updated with new photos previously unpublished
Finding an abandoned home like this Abandoned Cat Lady House is mostly luck, mixed with knowing where to look and most importantly knowing what signs to look for. Many of the abandoned houses I’ve found looked abandoned. There are those that you just aren’t sure about though…take the crazy cat lady house for example. Like most urban explorers do, we’re always looking for the obvious signs
-no mailbox/mailbox stuffed with newspapers and phonebooks.
Driving home on a summer night I saw a property with a very faded sign with the painted name of the farm barely visible. Beyond that sign was a slightly overgrown lawn that showed some signs of maintenance. There were rows of pear trees and a car parked in the driveway. The Abandoned Cat Lady House was set far back from the road almost totally out of sight.
I pulled in acting like I made a wrong turn, in-case someone was actually there. First thing I noticed was a chain across the front door and overgrown weeds on the long steps leading up. The inside French doors were open and part of the ceiling tiles had collapsed from water damage..but I still was a little unsure of whether this is abandoned or not.
I was right
After circling the entire house in the surrounding sun room I made my way inside the house, I was immediately overcome by the smell of cat…..cat pee, cat feces, cat litter…cat death.
Then, I realized it’s not only cat smells all around me, it’s also cat stuff….
The next thing that I could not avoid was the wallpaper…awful, awful wallpaper in every room…
Upon further exploration of the Abandoned Cat Lady House , the many rooms and the two floors, you get a strong sense of sadness and loneliness, it’s very hard in an abandonment like this one to not draw your own conclusions of what happened. There are so many personal items all over the house, not claimed by any family members….just left
Two of the most heart breaking things that I found in this house were a cane, resting against the couch….as though that’s where it was left when the owner passed away, alone in the living room…
The other, was a card written to a father by his daughter who has moved away to Germany, she talks about keeping up his daily walks and to not smoke so much…
There are countless other items throughout the home…
Like this jewelry box, the ballerina still spun when I opened it and the song played one whole time, and then it stopped.
These drawings, done by one of the owners. There were dozens of pages of these sketches.
I found a few photos that I had carefully placed in the same spot as where the photo was taken…
And finally, as if there wasn’t enough sadness in this house, and proof that the owner had died in the house, I found this – what looks like a cat..I wonder how long it wandered the home afraid before she tucked herself underneath the chair and let herself die….
After my first visit I had invited a few trusted explorers to see the place, and not long after that the scrappers made their way there. The copper pipes had been pulled from the walls, the brass light fixtures gone, the kitchen and living room looted.
I have been two times since and this place has become a popular spot among local urban explorers, regardless of the looting, scrapping and the fact that nothing is as it was what I found it, it still attracts visitors and every shot I see from another explorer is another reminder of how sad it felt on that first visit.
Update to this story in 2015: This house has been destroyed, looted and tagged to the point that this home is no longer unique or remarkable. A number of so called explorers have published videos of this house and stupidly published the address and even the name of the woman who lived here. It is now one of the easiest abandoned homes to find in the area, thanks to a handful of people with no care or regard for preservation. This house is one example of why I am so careful with who I share information with, and what information I provide when I publish images and stories. Destruction and looting is inevitable, but anything I can to to hold that off, I will gladly do.
Update to this story February 2016: On the night of February 1st/early morning February 2nd this house was burned to the ground and completely destroyed. The news reports are all saying the fire investigators suspect this was an arson. Here is a photo taken by Andrew Collins/
@CollinsPhoto while the fire was burning.
Here are some photos taken with my cell phone of the scene the day of the fire
Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed it.