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SAN DIEGO — Ocean Beach residents are fighting to clean up a smelly situation involving feral cats, and they say the problem was caused by a cat lover.

According to neighbors, all but one unit at the apartment complex on Bacon Street and Santa Cruz Avenue are vacant, and feral cats have taken over.

Jacqueline Kowalik, who lives one door down from the apartment, said the problem is getting really bad.

“Cats everywhere — they’re having little kittens everywhere,” said Kowalik. “There are feces are everywhere.”

According neighbors, the owner, who lives in a back unit upstairs, indiscriminately feeds the feral cats, who then breed and multiply, leaving a smelly mess.

“It’s really intense, you have to hold your breath when you walk by.”

FOX 5 tried to reach out to the owner but the calls went unanswered.

A local Ocean Beach Facebook posting about the issue quickly garnered hundreds of replies, all complaining about the building, the cats and the smell.

“It was just kind of funny, because as I saw that Facebook post. We have a very active community Facebook group,” said Kowalik. ” I was on hold with animal services trying to figure out what to do, because with the heat that we’ve had, the smell has been a little bit more intense.”

San Diego County Animal Control said cats are only part of the problem.

“You’re not only feeding cats, you’re feeding everything else in the community,” said County Animal Control Deputy Director Daniel DeSousa. “So you’re drawing in mice, you’re drawing in rats, possums, skunks.”

However Animal Control said there isn’t much they can do to resolve the issue. They said there are no leash laws for cats, no laws have been broken and so far it’s not a public health issue.

“Cats are considered to be free roaming creatures so animal services cannot go out and just pick these cats up,” said DeSousa.

If residents are determined to alleviate the problem, they can set up traps and bring the animals to animal services, DeSousa said.