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COOPERSTOWN – A local animal shelter is hard at work after 19 kittens were found in a plastic bag.
According to the Susquehanna Animal Shelter in Cooperstown, 19 kittens in a plastic bag were found in a bathroom at AO Fox Hospital in Oneonta this morning. Shelter officials say there appear to be kittens from three or four different litters: some as young as two days old, still with umbilical cords attached; some are two to three weeks old; and some are about four weeks old.
"I don't know how they weren't suffocating, the ones that were on the bottom," Rebecca Daly, the communications coordinator for the shelter said. "I would say it was probably at least half way full with just kittens."
Officials with AO Fox Hospital say the kittens were found around 9:30 a.m. when workers in the switchboard office, which is next to the bathroom, heard them meowing. Hospital officials are now reviewing security footage to try to learn more about who left the kittens there. Switchboard operators believe it was a woman.
"At least she didn't drop them in the river or drop them somewhere where nobody would find them and just leave them there to die," Carol Boyd, a switchboard operator said. "They have a chance, so hopefully there's someone out there that wants kittens."
The hospital is also raising money to go toward the kittens’ care.
"When they're only a few days old, they have a serious uphill battle," Daly said. "I wish that I could talk to whoever did this and tell them that if this ever happens again, we're here to help and we want to help and we're not going to yell at them. It's giving them a lot better of a chance at living."
Susquehanna Animal Shelter is already working on setting up foster homes for all of the kittens, and they’re hoping to have them all placed by the end of the day.
The shelter says that all of the kittens need to be bottle fed, and it’s very dangerous for kittens to be away from their moms at such a young age.
“If you have kittens you cannot care for, PLEASE reach out to us for help!” the shelter wrote on its Facebook page. “This is also why spaying and neutering is SO incredibly important and truly SAVES lives.”
The shelter says that in the summer, this is a common occurrence.
If you’d like to make a donation to help out the kittens and other animals at the shelter, click here.
If you’re interested in being added to the foster list for situations like this in the future, or if you’d like more information about fostering, you can call the shelter at 607-547-8111, or visit them from 12-4 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, at 4841 State Rt. 28 in Cooperstown.
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