Kittens found in zipped up shopping bag on the back of a truck

Kittens found in zipped up shopping bag on the back of a truck

The RSPCA in Chesterfield is caring for two kittens who are thought to have been deliberately abandoned in an Aldi bag and left on the back of a truck.

The young felines were discovered by two men who noticed the bag moving as they were working in the Hasland area last Tuesday (23 January). When they unzipped it to take a closer look they found two white and tabby kittens huddled together inside. They were taken immediately to the RSPCA Chesterfield and North Derbyshire Animal Centre where they were checked over by staff.

Estimated to be around eight months old, they are said to be in good health but weren't microchipped. They've been named Constance and Evelyn.

Steph McCawley from the Chesterfield shelter, which last year looked after and found new homes for 300 unwanted animals, said: "The bag didn't belong to the men and it was moving on the back of the vehicle, and to their shock, they found these two lovely kittens inside.

"They're friendly pets, in good condition and have been cared for in the past, so, sadly, someone has resorted to this course of action. We'd like to say a big thank you to the men for bringing Constance and Evelyn to the centre. They're now safe and warm with full tummies and getting lots of attention from everyone here."

Incidents of animals being abandoned are at a three-year high. In 2023, the RSPCA's emergency line received 20,999 reports - 10,583 of which involved cats. This was higher than in 2022 (19,645), 2021 (17,179) and 2020 (16,118).

The charity says the current economic climate, combined with a boom in pet ownership during the pandemic, has created a perfect storm for animal welfare and its officers are seeing the impact on the frontline - with reports of abandoned animals increasing as owners resort to desperate measures.

Constance and Evelyn are bonded and will be looking for a new home together in due course. Prospective adopters should keep an eye on the centre's website. Anyone with first-hand information about them can contact the RSPCA's appeals line on 0300 123 8018.

This year the RSPCA celebrates its 200th birthday. To mark this special anniversary the animal welfare charity wants to inspire one million people to join their movement to improve animals' lives.