A CAT-lover has hit out at cold-hearted thieves who swiped hundreds of pounds of donated cat food from a Rugby charity.
Around £270 worth of cat food was bundled into a car from a pallet – which was left on the Newbold driveway of a volunteer because she was attending a funeral.
The food was a yearly donation from a pet food company, meaning Rugby Cats Protection (RCP) will now have to top up supplies from their own coffers to keep their four-legged friends alive.
RCP volunteer fosterer Helen Ledingham said the stolen food was incredibly important to the charity.
She said: “We are a charity that relies on donations to feed the cats that are in our care.
“Looking after frightened and unwell animals who do not understand what is going on can be challenging, so we need to give them the highest standards of care and ensure their health and welfare is a priority.
“As you can imagine we get through a significant amount of cat food every year.”
The charity needs food supplies to help rehabilitate the stray and unwanted cats it takes in, which would otherwise be at risk.
And Helen, who has been a fosterer for ten years, said they have dealt with some upsetting and traumatic cases.
She said: “We had a litter of young kittens brought in that had been dumped in a packing box with an engine and travelled hundreds of miles.
“One litter was found in a basket dumped on the railway embankment.
“Cats are often brought to us which have become poorly from being pregnant too many times, which then give birth to failing kittens who all require care and hand-rearing.”
She said it was sad that people helped themselves to something that didn’t belong to them.
“If they were that desperate for food for a cat they should have telephoned Cats Protection for short-term help – though I expect they were out to make some money at the expense of somebody else,” she said.
Since the news broke, the charity’s tireless volunteers and fundraisers have had to make up for the shortfall of food.
“Our supporters have been fantastic,” said Helen. “We would like to say a big thank you to them.
“It has shown just how many more kind, good and generous people we share our lives with.”