Some people are so incensed after two cats were found in a crate taped shut in the woods near Campbell River that they’ve put up a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of whoever did it.
The seven-month-old cats found near Quinsam Crossing over the weekend are recovering after being near death. Both the SPCA and Van Isle Veterinary Hospital staff are optimistic they’ll recover over the next few months.
“Treatment is pretty straight forward from here,” said Dr. Mireille deWinter of VIVH. “They are in great spirits, very food motivated and happy to see people. I’m not sure how long they were left in the kennel but it doesn’t appear to have caused any fear of people so far. Hopefully they will make a full recovery.”
The female cats were found by a man and his dog while out hiking. The cats were inside a crate that had been sealed with packing tape, and judging by their conditions, they had been in there a while.
Their condition was so bad that it brought SPCA staff to tears.
Both cats weighed less than half a normal body weight and the smallest one, a ginger and white domestic short hair, was suffering from organ failure, likely through dehydration and starvation. The hospital was considering euthanasia for that one.
But on Tuesday morning, hospital staff told the Courier-Islander that after being offered small meals of calorie-dense diet throughout the weekend, the cat now has “normal values” on her blood tests and she is eating very well.
Because Campbell River does not have an SPCA, the man who found the cats took them to the Comox SPCA.
The SPCA immediately transported the cats to Van Isle Veterinary Clinic where they remained on intravenous medications and hydration. The black and white domestic short haired female cat weighed 1.75 kilograms and the orange and white domestic short haired female cat weighed
2.3 kilograms. The normal weight for a seven-monthold cat, estimated to be their age, should be around four kilograms according to a spokesperson from the Comox SPCA.
Leon Davis, a spokesperson for the Comox SPCA, said that they were not able to get any evidence from the crate because it had been out in the elements. The cats had no tattoos or microchips.
“This case will be solved by the public,” he said. “Does anyone remember a couple of cats being around a neighbouring home and suddenly not there? Does anyone recognize these two cats? Has anyone heard someone talking about leaving cats in the woods?” Leon said it is one thing to abandon cats out in the woods, to fend for themselves, it is another to trap them inside a crate, seal it with packing tape, and leave them to suffer an agonizing death.
“Those cats did not have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting out of there,” he said.
He said he hoped the cats were not abandoned because there is no SPCA in Campbell River.
“We are not that far away for people to bring their unwanted animals from Campbell River,” he said.
If and when found, the person(s) will face charges under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and the Criminal Code of Canada.
Penalties on convictions range from fines, not being allowed to own animals again, to jail time.
If you have any information about this case, please contact the Comox SPCA at (250) 339-7722.