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shivering Five kittens dumped outside ISPCA centre in Longford in wet cold conditions

"It’s heartless to think that someone just left them there all night and simply walked away"

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It would take very little for a community to take basic care of strays. Picture by Dimitriy Sarnikov

It would take very little for a community to take basic care of strays. Picture by Dimitriy Sarnikov

It would take very little for a community to take basic care of strays. Picture by Dimitriy Sarnikov

Five kittens were found dumped in a cage by a staff member at the road entrance to the National Animal Centre in Longford.

Gerard Griffin, a senior Animal Care Assistant at the ISPCA, made the shocking discovery on his way into work.

“I noticed a cage and stopped to remove it when I discovered a number of kittens inside,” Gerard said of the sad discovery.

“I could see there was about five of them huddled together; they were absolutely soaking wet and shivering with the cold. It was difficult to determine how long they were there and I was really concerned they were suffering from hypothermia.”

“With the rainfall and freezing cold conditions that night, they were lucky to be alive. I rushed them inside and tried to warm them up, giving them some food while I waited for an urgent veterinary assessment,” he explained.

“The kittens were no more than five weeks old and sadly have experienced the very worst start in there little lives. It’s heartless to think that someone just left them there all night and simply walked away”.

The kittens, who have been taken in by the centre have been given names Adele, Gavin, Tiffany, Austin and Dylan, as named by the staff, are now being well looked after, but it is hoped that they will be rehomed to as soon as they have fully recuperated from their ordeal.

“These kittens experienced a very traumatic start in life,” said ISPCA Centre Manager Trish Spargo.

“They are extremely friendly and it is obvious they are well handled and would have had lots of human contact. It’s a very irresponsible thing to do. They are very vulnerable and might not have survived the night in this cold weather.”

The ISPCA reiterated that it is an offence to abandon an animal and that pet owners need to be aware of their responsibility to ensure the welfare of their animals.

“You cannot just abandon kittens simply because you don't want them,” Trish said.

Having cats neutered or spayed would prevent accidental litters of kittens from being born in the first place, urging pet owners to do so when their kittens are of age.

It comes as dog pounds across the country are seeing rising numbers of pets being abandoned following the easing of COVID lockdown restrictions.

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Last month Cork Dog Action Welfare Group admitted that their shelter was overwhelmed with dogs being surrendered by their owners.

“Like every rescue up and down the country we are really struggling with owner surrenders. Our shelter is full and we do not have enough foster homes to help out,” they shared on Facebook.

“Most of the dogs we are being asked to take have issues that we are not qualified to deal with and we are referring to trainers where possible.”

The group were forced to closed their doors for intake except for in emergency cases, and have not yet been able to reopen to the community.

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