Four newborn kittens have had a lucky escape after falling down the gap in a cavity wall in a bungalow in Frinton-on-Sea, Essex.

Firemen with recued kittens © RSPCAThe owners of the bungalow, Sue and Brian Davie, alerted us after hearing the cries of the kittens. Their mother, a ginger cat later found to be almost blind, was located in the loft and it was clear that she had given birth but her offspring were nowhere to be seen.

RSPCA Inspector Sarah Elmy said:

“We could hear the kittens in the kitchen wall so the owner kindly agreed to get out his jigsaw and lift a couple of boards inside one of the kitchen cupboards.

“We had a good look round but now the crying seemed to be coming from the external wall cavity so I contacted the fire brigade in Frinton and asked for their assistance.”

The kittens were just a week old

Fireman making hole in wall © RSPCAWhen the firemen arrived they made a couple of holes in the exterior of the house to look inside the wall cavity but were still unable to find them. After a period of careful listening, the kittens were located at the other end of the kitchen.

With the floorboards lifted the first kitten was found. At just a week old as the kittens’ eyes and ears were still closed. Apart from being covered in brick dust and cobwebs the young cat appeared strong and healthy.

After a while the sound of the other kittens had become distant so the Urban Search and Rescue team for the fire service, who have very good listening gear, were called in.

Inspector Elmy said:

“With their specialist equipment and knowledge they located the other kittens under the lounge floor and once the carpet had been pulled back and boards lifted we were able to get them out.

“As we lifted the first one out, one of the firemen said ‘can you put my name down for that one’ and two of the four have now been adopted by members of the team.

“The willingness of Sue and Brian Davie to allow the Essex Fire Service free reign of their home and the dedication of the fire service in persisting in searching for these kittens is greatly appreciated.”

She wouldn’t have been able to bring up the kittens on her own

When the mother and her kittens, who are now in foster care, were examined by a vet it was discovered that the mother cat is almost blind. Even though she is a young cat she has cataracts in both eyes and can only discern light and dark.

Inspector Elmy added:

“This explains why she was spitting and growling at everyone, but as soon as we stroked her she calmed down.

“There is no way she could have brought up these kittens on her own and although she caused severe disturbance to the family whose bungalow roof she gave birth in, it is a blessing that she was found before a tragedy occurred.

“We will now make sure that we find the right home for her and her young family.”

Find out more about what we do and read some more of our animal rescue stories.

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