Someone dumped 14 plastic tubs containing a multitude of cats — some of which were pregnant — outside a popular feline sanctuary in Central California early Thursday morning.
Workers arrived to the Cat House on the Kings, in Parlier, Calif., and found the tubs carefully placed at the far end of their parking lot, said Beth Caffrey, a spokeswoman for the cat sanctuary.
“Just to leave them in the cold and rain is not OK,” she said.
Someone drilled air holes through the plastic and fitted each tub with a bed and blankets. Inside the tubs, workers found three male cats and 11 female cats, three of which were pregnant and one who had recently given birth to two kittens. The kittens, she said, were only a few days old.
The no-kill sanctuary could have offered low-cost or free options for spaying and neutering the cats if that was an issue, according to workers.
“This is a huge financial burden for us,” Caffrey said.
Sanctuary workers said they don’t know who dumped the cats because the event wasn’t recorded by security cameras.
“They knew what they were doing,” said the sanctuary’s director, Lynea Lattanzio, whose home and property houses more than 700 cats. “They went through a lot of effort.”
But what’s most troubling about the incident, she said, is that the whole thing could have been avoided.
“It’s distressing me that these people couldn’t ask for help,” Lattanzio said. “We would have just helped.”
Nearly 25 years ago, Lattanzio began using her 12-acre property for rescued and abandoned cats. At the cat house, the felines have full rein of the refuge, which is situated on the banks of the Kings River.