Cat controversy leads to lawsuit

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The first thing that you notice when you enter Delma Khan's condo is the smell.

It's a strong ammonia smell.

"Since we've purchased it, we haven't been able to move in. We had a company come and they said it's cat urine we're smelling,"  she says.

They don't own any cats, but their upstairs neighbors do, at least thirteen of them.

Cassandra Van Cleave also cares for a number feral neighborhood cats.

The cats have become a  sore spot for many in this condo complex..

They've complained to the homeowners association and the city.

According to a 2014 city ordinance you can only have four animals per household, with no more than three cats or three dogs.

Tuesday, the city made an unsuccessful attempt to confiscate the animals.

Van Cleave is fighting back.

Tuesday she filed this petition requesting a temporary injunction to stop the seizure. Her attorney says there's more at stake here. The ordinance didn't grandfather in anyone.

"Every cat she has on the list in her lawsuit was in her possession, in her home, at the time of the ordinance change. She should be allowed to keep those cats, and we want to be able to keep those cats in her possession and everyone else's possession."

Because anyone in violation could lose their pets to the animal shelter where they could be killed, they want the courts to overturn the ordinance.  But as far as Khan is concerned, she doesn't want the cats dead,  just gone.   

"It's just not right. I mean I'm an animal lover. It's not about the cats, against the cats, but it's just too many."