The Most Horrifying Episode of ‘Hoarders’ Made Viewers Burst Into Tears

Some people might be able to relate to the A&E show Hoarders if they have an emotional attachment to things they’ve acquired from family or friends over the years. While there is normalcy to that, those who hoard everything they buy can be defined as a mental illness.

Compulsive hoarding can be comorbid with a number of different illnesses, like obsessive-compulsive disorder, dementia, or clinical depression. However, it’s hard to treat, and the show Hoarders has presented some severe examples.

One episode, in particular, made viewers shed tears at how severe the hoarding problem was. Not that the show hasn’t presented some of the most extreme cases seen in the nation. Some of them are a bit gross, so proceed with caution reading here.

A living room full of things
Living Room in a Hoarder Home | Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images for YOU Magazine

Hoarders example of people hoarding human waste in their homes

Some of the most horrific hoarding cases are those who’ve felt compelled to keep their human waste in containers or buckets within their homes. In one case, it was due to septic issues in the woman’s house.

For those curious, this was the notorious Shanna/Lynda episode aired back in October of 2012. Shanna had dozens of bottles and buckets of her own human waste because her mom did the same. Apparently, to save money, her mom did away with any garbage service to rid of the containers.

One can only imagine what the smell must have been like entering this home for the first time. It was beyond anything the team at Hoarders had ever seen, outside of only being the beginning.

At least the team found out Shanna disposed of her buckets outside, even if also horrifyingly unsanitary. While arguably an economic problem as much as a mental health issue, one can only hope this daughter-mom duo found some serious help afterward.

The Hoarders team found something more severe later that season

In December of 2012, Hoarders discovered a woman who’s now voted as the worst hoarder ever seen in the show’s history. Animal lovers will want to turn away now because this situation related to a woman who froze dead cats.

As unbelievable as it sounds, a woman collected dead cats she found in her local area and placed the corpses in her deep freeze. Discovering this was obviously a shock to the filming crew, despite the woman giving a questionable excuse.

The woman’s name was Terry, and she said she was intending to cremate the cat bodies, though could never afford to. Her reasoning for freezing the cats was a feeling of helping to save the cats when no one else would.

Whether this woman received help for this odd hoarding sickness is unknown. If arguably the worst-case seen on the show to date, far too many other cases were equally as heart-wrenching.

How far is too far on the show Hoarders?

Looking back at other episodes of this series, plenty of other people existed who kept their human waste in containers or just let their homes become overgrown with rats and garbage.

One thing to keep in mind is hoarding and collecting are two different things. Mental health experts have laid out a clear distinction between the two. In other words, when one collects, cleanliness to the objects and home is usually common.

Hoarding is just letting things sit and never taking care to keep them washed or the surrounding area where items are kept. No wonder so many people on Hoarders are seen living in filthy conditions, including thick cobwebs by the tons.

Some might suggest other episodes were worse, like the woman who kept rotting eggs in her home, or another person’s refrigerator being infested with maggots. Hoarders might want to take a breather and focus on stories not quite so harsh, including updates on whether the extra bad hoarders finally received the help they deserved.