Skip to main content
Publish date:

Animal rescue owner charged after 64 cats found dead at home

The 25-year-old is facing 13 counts of animal mistreatment.

A woman from St. Paul who operated an animal rescue near Farmington has been charged after 64 cats were found dead while in her care.

More than 40 other animals were also found neglected at the rental property in Castle Rock Township in May.

Responsible for their care was Caycee Lynn Bregel, 25, who ran the nonprofit Minnesota Animal Rescue, previously known as Minnesota Foster Cats and Kittens.

She had taken in 144 cats and one dog from the Animal Humane Society, but the property in Farmington was the subject of several complaints raising concerns about the conditions they were being kept in.

One of those complaints came from the owner of the rental property, who told police they had seen cats that were "skin and bone" and had no access to food or water.

As they spoke with the owner outside the building on May 9, they noticed an "overpowering odor of animal urine and feces from inside."

When authorities, including Animal Humane Society employees, were eventually able to search the property later that day, with Bregel's permission, they found between 20-30 cats and a few dogs running loose in rooms where floors, walls and windows were covered in excrement.

In the back yard, they found cat carcasses and animals buried in shallow graves.

Follow Bring Me The News on Facebook.

The animals alive in the house were emaciated, with no food or water being provided for them in conditions described by one of the Dakota County deputies at the scene as "horrific."

Authorities returned the next day wearing protective clothing, and found dead cats being stored in freezers and refrigerators, and some 35 dead cats decomposing in the garage.

In total, they found 64 dead cats, 43 alive cats, 1 living guinea pig and 5 living dogs.

They found 17 more animals at her rescue business, also in Farmington, all of which were alive but many of which had serious health issues.

Bregel has been charged with 13 counts of animal mistreatment, one of them a felony charge.

Next Up

Kirill Kaprizov

2nd period surge leads Wild to fourth straight win

With three goals in the second, the Wild blasted the last-place Coyotes.

Gopher Basketball / R.J. Stephens

Late-tip in helps Gophers pass first big test, improve to 6-0

Luke Loewe's bucket with 2.4 seconds remaining helped the Gophers stay undefeated.


Man, 40, found dead stuck in air duct at his Otter Tail Co. home

The discovery was made by family members Monday morning.

Biden Minnesota visit stream screengrab - 11.30.31

What Biden said during his visit to Minnesota Tuesday

The president spoke at Dakota County Technical College.

Grand Marais

Cook County registers its first COVID-19 death of the pandemic

The sparsely populated, highly-vaccinated county has continuously had one of the lowest rates of COVID in the state.

Waits family screengrab CNN

Support for MN family after anti-maskers target child of school board chair

An online group opposing Kelsey Waits outed the child as transgender.

Pixabay - school - classroom

St. Paul schools add 2 days to winter break due to pandemic stress

The added days off are meant to acknowledge the stress the pandemic has caused.

Fardoussa Abdillahi

Charges: St. Cloud mother killed baby, placed him in dumpster

The 4-month-old baby was found by officers on Sunday morning.


1 dead in crash at Lake Street intersection in south Minneapolis

There have been 465 deaths on Minnesota roads this year, according to the state's traffic division.


St. Paul restaurateur's businesses burglarized a 6th time

The owner of The Gnome and Hope Breakfast Bar is asking politicians to help St. Paul business owners.

North Memorial Air Care

Teen suffers life-threatening injuries in head-on crash in southern MN

The 18-year-old was airlifted to a Mayo Clinic hospital in Rochester.

foo fighters grohl mr rossi wikimedia

Foo Fighters abruptly cancel Gophers stadium show hours after announcing it

The band is looking for a new venue because of a disagreement over COVID protocols.


Former animal rescue owner pleads guilty to animal cruelty

64 cats were found dead at her rental home in Dakota Co. last year.


Charges: Sick of the barking, man shoots neighbor's dog dead

The 61-year-old has been charged with cruelty to animals.

Screen Shot 2021-04-25 at 8.32.22 AM

Abused cat rescued after being tied up in trash bag, tossed in dumpster

The heartbreaking discovery was made in North St. Paul.

Skinned dog

Rescue shelter finds skinned dog on NW Minnesota road

The German Shepherd was just 7-months-old.

Ritzie pitbull

Rescued pitbull suspected of being used in dog fighting ring

The dog is on the road to recovery thanks to a nearby animal shelter.

Screen Shot 2019-11-22 at 10.11.55 PM

All pets adopted after huge turnout at Mpls. 'Clear the Shelter' event

A fantastic day for Minneapolis Animal Care and Control.

Screen Shot 2019-02-23 at 8.49.07 AM

Dog videoed being shot may have also been beaten with golf clubs

Police say they've had reports of a second video showing the animal's mistreatment.

Leeroy Woodbeck

Charges: Thief stole car, threw owner's pet dog out of the window

A man with an extensive criminal history has been charged with multiple offenses.