Friday, June 18, 2021

Smell of sardines motivates 4-week-old kittens to climb out of deep drain

The enticing smell of tinned sardines enticed two tiny, four-week-old kittens out of a labyrinth of drains to the surface after they had run away and hidden. Sue Lewis from a nearby charity, The Scratching Post, said: "We basically soaked a net in juice from a sardine tin, wedged one end under something heavy and then fed the sardine-smelling netting through the drains."

The drain down which the kittens plunged
The drain down which the kittens plunged. Photo: The Scratching Post.

She remarked that "It was an absolute miracle they managed to do that". She means that it's amazing that these tiny four-week-old kittens were able to climb up this netting out of a hole in the ground. She also said: "They are so tiny, no bigger than the palm of your hand. They've been without milk for 48 hours and we really thought they were going to die. It was heartbreaking to hear their cries."

At one time they tried playing the sounds of a mother calling her young but it didn't work. The Essex Fire service manager Toby Ingram together with Sue Lewis hatched the plan with the sardines.

The family with a foster carer
The family with a foster carer. Photo: The Scratching Post.

The kittens were born to a stray cat at a salad farm in Waltham Abbey, Essex, UK. The intention was to rescue them and take them to a cat rescue but two of the kittens escaped on Saturday. They dived into a drain that led to miles of pipework below the greenhouses. They could hear their plaintive cries which motivated them to try this imaginative method of enticing them out.

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