KITTENS were ‘seconds away’ from being crushed to death after they were dumped at a recycling plant in a cardboard box.
‘Safe’ and ‘Sound’, as they have been named, were discovered in the household waste section of the plant, in Willowbrook Road, East Worthing, last Tuesday.
Worthing and District Animal Rescue Service senior animal rescue officer Billy Elliott now hopes to rehome the ‘friendly’ tabbies in the new year.
He said: “They were just picking through it and came across two kittens that had been dumped there.
“They are the sweetest little kittens. They were literally seconds away from getting crushed. At this time of year, it beggars belief.”
The kittens were found in a bin liner inside the box and were heard by two site operatives at the West Sussex County Council site.
They were washed and taken to Grove Lodge vets.
At less than eight weeks old, the kittens would not be ready for sale, as they did not have their first set of vaccinations.
Mr Elliot said: “They are normally ready for sale when they are eight or nine weeks old. Someone perhaps didn’t want the extra work of vaccinating them.
“It’s a bit cruel and heartless to do this before Christmas.”
After their stay at Grove Lodge, the kittens were handed to WADARS for re-homing.
Mr Elliott said: “They are fine and friendly and don’t seem worse for wear for their ordeal, which is a big positive.
“Because of their age, we need to vaccinate them first before we allow them to be re-homed. They are a couple of weeks away, which will be just after Christmas, now.
“Christmas is not the best time to re-home animals because of all the different things going on and all the noise.”
WADARS is a charity which provides a rescue service across the district.
Mr Elliott urged anyone considering abandoning their pets to call them for help, rather than putting their animals at risk.
He added: “A lot of people go to the tip and it’s a constant stream, so it could have been anyone.
“I wonder how people sleep at night with that kind of thing on their conscience. This is why we want people to call us and ask for help, rather than dump them needlessly like that.”
A spokesman for Viridor, which operates the site, said dumping the kittens in the waste was ‘dangerous’ and reiterated Mr Elliott’s plea to contact a rescue centre or animal charity if pet owners could no longer look after their animals.
To contact WADARS, call 01903 262828.