Essex: Cats found abandoned off the A120 near Harwich

Three cats dumped in lay-by in a box sealed with duct tape

Three cats dumped in lay-by in a box sealed with duct tape - Credit: RSPCA

Three cats were found abandoned by the side of the A120 in a sealed up box.

The black and white male, ginger and white female and tortoiseshell female were all found crammed inside the black box earlier this month, just off the main road near Harwich.

One small cut had been made on the top of the box which had been thoroughly sealed with duct tape.

The cats were in good health, but in a high state of distress.

They have now been taken into RSPCA care where they are making a good recovery, and have been named Wallis, Mia and Sandy.

RSPCA inspector Sarah Elmy said: “To dump live animals like this is heartless, anything could have happened to them.

“Thank goodness these cats were found when they were. It was so hot and humid inside that box, regardless of the tiny slit on the top, they could not have survived inside there for very long.

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“It must have been absolutely terrifying for them, especially so near such a busy and loud main road.

“We urge anyone with any information about how they came to be dumped like this to contact us on 0300 1234 999.”

Essex was yesterday announced as the ninth county on a national league table of abandonments, with 867 reports of abandoned animals so far this year. RSPCA staff and volunteers have seen an alarming increase in animals being abandoned across the South East, and the charity says it expects the situation to get worse over the winter months.

Wallis, Mia and Sandy are not yet available for rehoming but may be in the near future.

Anyone interested in rehoming these or other cats should contact RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre on 0300 123 0704 or visit the RSPCA website.