Call it Barbara Berger’s line in the litter.
A Brighton Beach cat hoarder has taken steps to put all but 10 of her 45 kitties up for adoption — violating a deal with her landlord that could get her booted from her rent stabilized apartment.
Berger’s landlord said she can stay at her one-bedroom apartment on Coney Island Avenue as long as she whittles down her massive cat colony to two, but the 51-year-old said she would rather give up her home, where she pays just $153 a month, then get rid of her 10 favorites.
“It would be very traumatizing to lose them,” said Berger.
Brooklyn Rescue Umbrella founder Josie Marrero agreed to help Berger put some of the cats up for adoption after reading about the cat lover’s plight on Brooklyn Daily, but she has yet to get her to give up the last 10.
“We’re working on her,” Marrero said. “As she begins to trust us, she might give us more cats.”
Berger agreed to let Marrero screen most of her cats at a local vet clinic and move the healthy ones to the Petco store on 86th Street at Stillwell Avenue in Bensonhurst, where 12 of the cats will be put up for adoption this week.
The Long Island-based North Shore Animal League has also agreed to take in seven of Berger’s cats.
Petco manager Jeff Artis said anyone who passes the company’s background check will be eligible to adopt one of the animals.
“We’re glad to help,” Artis said. “Every pet needs a good home.”
Berger moved into her city-subsidized apartment with 15 cats in 2007, but said that number ballooned as she took in strays off the street and accepted kittens from neighbors and friends.
Her landlord, Herald Realty Group, threatened to evict her in December but hammered out a deal in housing court last month that would let her keep her apartment if she ditches 43 of the felines by mid-March.
Herald Realty Group declined to comment on Berger’s case.
Cat adoption at Petco [2601 86th Street at Stillwell Avenue in Bensonhurst, (718) 266-1206] from March 2 to March 11. Call the store for more information.Reach reporter Daniel Bush at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (718) 260-8310. Follow him at twitter.co