County news: Kitten survives 80-mile journey in digger

Three-day-old Digby somehow survived the journey from the M40

Three-day-old Digby somehow survived the journey from the M40

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A litter of kittens travelled more than 80 miles across the country to Sussex in a digger but only one survived the journey.

It is believed the kitten must have travelled in the digger’s shovel, which journeyed from a site on the M40 to Hastings on Saturday, April 23.

The sight the workmen found in the digger, two of the litter were dead once they arrived in Hastings

The sight the workmen found in the digger, two of the litter were dead once they arrived in Hastings

The kitten, and his siblings, were discovered when workers started their shift two days later.

Sadly, the little black and white kitten – who has now been named Digby – was the only one in his litter to survive.

Builder Martin Dewsnap scooped up the kitten and rushed him to the RSPCA’s Sussex East and Hastings branch, also known as Bluebell Ridge Cattery.

“The digger driver was carrying out his usual checks on the machinery when he found the three kittens,” he said.

Bluebell Ridge Cattery manager Myra Grove with Digby after his 80-mile trip

Bluebell Ridge Cattery manager Myra Grove with Digby after his 80-mile trip

“Sadly, two were already dead but one was alive.

“You expect to find the diesel low or something, but don’t expect to see cats inside.”

RSPCA staff were shocked when the worker arrived on their doorstep with the tiny three-day-old kitten in an ice-cream tub and asked them to help.

The centre took in the baby who was immediately fed and checked over, but the charity is still baffled as to how the litter ended up in the digger’s shovel.

Muffin has taken Digby in as one of her own

Muffin has taken Digby in as one of her own

Bluebell Ridge manager Myra Grove said: “It’s a mystery as to when and where the kittens started their journey and what happened to their mother, who has not been sighted.

“Digby and his siblings were very, very young so it’s not clear how they came to get inside the digger bucket.

“It’s a miracle that even one of the kittens was able to survive without his mother.

“Thankfully, a doting mother at Bluebell Ridge has now taken Digby under her wing, whilst looking after her other four kittens.

“He is now receiving the love and care he needs from new mum, Muffin, and his adopted family.”

Digby will now be cared for by staff at the Sussex centre until he is old enough to be rehomed.

Myra added: “This time of year there are a lot of unwanted kittens and most of the RSPCA centres are filled to the brim.

“We can’t emphasise enough how important neutering your pet cat is as the feline population in England escalates.

“Neutering your cat will prevent unwanted pregnancies and can also protect them from deadly diseases and infections.”

To rehome one of the RSPCA’s cats or kittens, visit http://www.rspca.org.uk/findapet.

To see all of Bluebell Ridge’s cats looking for a new home, visit http://www.bluebellridge.org.uk.

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