Cat and kittens found dumped and taped up in cardboard box near Worksop

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A cat and her four newborn kittens were abandoned in a cardboard box under a tree near Worksop.

The family were found by a concerned member of the public in Wigthorpe, to the north of the Gateford area of the town, who kept them safe until the RSPCA was able to rescue them and take them to a nearby vet for treatment.

The kittens were thought to be just over a week old and sadly one was so poorly that vets decided the kindest thing was to put it to sleep to prevent them suffering further.

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The other kittens and mum remain at the local vets for treatment - while the RSPCA looks to find space at one of its centres or with a foster carer.

The mother and kittens were taped up in a crisp box and dumped on the outskirts of WorksopThe mother and kittens were taped up in a crisp box and dumped on the outskirts of Worksop
The mother and kittens were taped up in a crisp box and dumped on the outskirts of Worksop

The incident comes as the RSPCA launches its Cancel Out Cruelty fundraising campaign which calls on the public to help support our frontline teams so they can save more animals during the busy summer months.

Animal Rescue Officer Daniel Holman said: “This lovely friendly new mum and her kittens were callously dumped in a Skip crisp box wrapped in gaffa tape in the middle of a lane near a tree.

“Thankfully a member of the public found them and kept them safe until we were able to take them to a vet for treatment.

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“We know that it is a challenging time for pet owners at the moment especially with the cost of living crisis - but abandoning your pet is never the answer - there is no guarantee they will be found.

“We are in the midst of an animal welfare crisis and with so many animals being abandoned our centres are full.

“This sad case highlights why we’ve launched our Cancel Out Cruelty campaign, to raise funds to help our frontline rescue teams continue to save animals from cruelty.“The RSPCA’s frontline rescuers, volunteers and a network of branches are working tirelessly to save animals this summer but we can't do it alone. Please help cancel out cruelty, visit”

Anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area or who has any information that could assist the RSPCA’s investigation should contact the charity appeal line, confidentially on 0300 123 8018.

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The RSPCA has recently launched an urgent appeal for adopters as the number of cats in private boarding soars to nearly 300 and the cost exceeds £8,000 per week, as the charity’s centres are full to bursting.

This year already, the animal welfare charity has received 9,748 calls about the number of dumped animals, compared to 8,551 in the first six months of 2022. Cats are some of the worst affected, with nearly 300 cats stuck in private boarding as they wait for a space in centres and branches.

The RSPCA is doing everything possible to help owners struggling with the cost of living crisis keep their pets in loving homes. The charity has committed £1.5million in extra funding to crisis measures; launched a new Cost of Living Hub, a dedicated telephone helpline, while their pet food bank partnerships continue to go from strength to strength.

Potential adopters can search for cats in need of homes by visiting the RSPCA Find a Pet page on their website.

The RSPCA website also offers lots of useful advice about neutering cats to prevent unwanted litters as well as preparing owners for the new mandatory microchipping laws coming into effect in England, in 2024.