Cost of living crisis sees more abandoned kittens in Norfolk

Pickle the orphaned kitten and his three siblings have received round-the-clock care at Cats Protect

Cats |Protection is seeing an increase in kittens being handed in - Credit: Cats Protection

Cats are feeling the pinch as the cost of living spirals and a feline charity fears it will see more abandoned pets.

It comes after reports struggling owners face being unable to afford to keep their animals.

n the first quarter of 2022 Cats Protection has seen a 25pc increase in the number of kittens being handed over to their adoption centre at Downham Market.

Sam Taylor, manager at the site, said: “We are all tightening our belts to cope with rising costs, such as growing vet bills and food costs. But we have also seen how some people are faced with unimaginably heart breaking decisions.

“Recently we rescued a heavily pregnant queen who was still only young herself. From her condition and where she was found, it is likely she was abandoned by owners who simply couldn’t cope with the prospect of a litter of kittens. It was a very sad case that didn’t end well for the kittens, but we were able to nurse the young mother back to health and hopefully she will find a new home soon.

“We have seen an increase in people looking for advice or financial support with neutering or to discuss relinquishing their cats, which is always sad. It’s not a decision anyone enters into lightly. We provide what advice we can to support cat welfare and ownership, and our neutering helpline is an important part of our work in the community.”

There are thousands of unwanted cats in the UK already and Cats Protection fears that as the cost of living increases, it will see larger numbers of kittens being abandoned or given up for rehoming due to financial pressures. 

Jane Clements, head of neutering at the organisation, said: “The top reasons are usually because they are stray, from an unwanted litter, or part of a multi-cat household. But this year we are also seeing people having to relinquish cats due to home evictions.

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“Life is expensive and the impact of the cost of living crisis is really going to start showing in the later stages of the year."

Cats Protection is offering neutering advice and financial support for cat owners keen to prevent unwanted litters via its helpline 03000 121212 or via www.cats.org.uk.