Two young female cats and their brood of kittens have had a lucky escape after being dumped on a Draperstown lane in a laundry basket.
A spokesperson for Little Cat Rescue NI said they were contacted by a local woman who found the cats abandoned near her home last Thursday.
After meeting with the finder in Antrim, the young family was handed over on Friday, and now the voluntary group will try to rehome them.
“The two mummy cats were in a laundry basket along with four kittens and there was another young adolescent cat, which was male,” said a spokesperson for Little Cat Rescue NI. “We are still trying to get him, but he has been spotted around the house, and we are trying to build trust.
“They were dumped on Thursday evening and she was able to lift them and put them in a stable overnight to keep them safe,” she added.
“Mummies with kittens would be dead in no time at all, never mind the fact that kittens crying could attract wildlife. They are very lucky mummies and babies.”
But, apparently, this is not the first time unwanted animals have been dumped along the Draperstown lane, as Little Cat Rescue said the woman who found the unwanted felines has previously taken in a donkey left near her property.
“People have dumped all sorts over the years - including a donkey about four years ago,” she added, “but she actually kept the donkey.
“She has also kept different dogs,” she went on, “but her hubby is allergic to cats, so she contacted us to see if we could help.”
Based in Craigavon, the 18-month-old group doesn’t usually get calls from as far away as Draperstown, but they said they will always do their best to try and find a new home for unwanted cats.
In this case, they said they will seek to rehome the mums - who appear to be sisters - together in one home when they are ready. After they find their forever home - the kittens will be next.
But these kittens are luckier that some, who have been found alone. Among the 30 cats they are currently looking after are a few kittens that have to be hand fed.
As well as this, they pay all of their own vet bills. To do this vital work, they rely on donations to treat them, chip and neuter them before finding them a new home.
“Our vet bill is about £11,000 a year in terms of getting everything sorted,” they added. “We take in pretty much everything as and when we can. We now have about 30 - 17 of which have medical problems.”
Paypal donations welcome at email@example.com