Cats and kittens rescued from ‘appalling conditions’

Published on 6 March 2024

RSPCA Victoria Inspectors have taken surrender of 17 cats and kittens from a property in the Greater Shepparton region after conducting an investigation under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986.

The Inspectors attended the premises with Greater Shepparton Council Officers for a routine inspection and animal welfare check after the council contacted the RSPCA for assistance.

RSPCA Inspectors did not expect to find a large number of animals confined in appalling conditions, with most suffering from illness or injury.

The cats found at the property were found to be suffering from some health concerns that required veterinary attention.

The partially decomposed bodies of two deceased kittens were also found at the property, prompting the requirement for the remaining 17 cats to be removed from the premises and subsequent surrender to ensure their immediate safety and wellbeing.

RSPCA Victoria Inspectorate Team Leader North East Region Michelle Green said the animals were living in appalling conditions.

“The animals were found confined in enclosures and living in abhorrent conditions with deceased bodies in enclosures with living cats,” said Team Leader Green.

“RSPCA Inspectors determined that the animals could not remain on the premises, and the owner decided to surrender the animals to the RSPCA.

“All cats were found to be suffering from some health concerns that required veterinary attention.

“Pet owners must provide a clean and sanitary environment for their animals, and necessary veterinary attention is a legal obligation that comes with pet ownership.

“It’s also vitally important to consider not just the number of animals you can legally own, but also the number of pets you are able to care for adequately.”

RSPCA Victoria’s veterinary team is now caring for all the animals and providing the necessary medical treatment and rehabilitation.

RSPCA Victoria estimates caring for these animals will cost the organisation over $53,000[1].

As in this case, reports from the community are vital to ensure animal cruelty and neglect are investigated.

This particular investigation remains ongoing and no further comment is available at this stage.

It’s an offence under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986 (POCTAA) to confine an animal in a manner that causes or is likely to cause unreasonable pain and suffering or fail to provide appropriate or veterinary attention to a sick or injured animal.

Anyone found guilty of such an act can face fines of up to $48,077.50 or 12 months imprisonment.

Anyone with concerns for the welfare of an animal, aware of illegal breeding, or an unusually high numbers of animals at one location is encouraged to contact RSPCA Victoria on 03 9224 2222 or submit a report at rspcavic.org/cruelty-report/ immediately.

[1] Based on the average length of stay and average cost per day by animal type.

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