Summer is typically a time of sleepless nights for Animals in Need

Summer is typically a time of sleepless nights for Animals in Need

Summer is typically a time of sleepless nights for many of Animals In Need's (AIN) volunteers with so many orphaned and abandoned kittens needing to be hand-reared.

Very young kittens need bottle-feeding every 3-4 hours with special kitten formula milk around the clock. 

They also need to be 'toileted' as they are unable to go to the toilet themselves without their mother's help when they are first born.

Another litter of newborn kittens was brought to AIN at the weekend as their feral mother had disappeared.  

The mother cat finally returned a day later, but she is sick and AIN are currently attempting to trap her so that she can receive treatment.


In the meantime, her kittens are safe and warm and having regular bottles of kitten milk.

Not long after the arrival of these kittens, the helpline received a call about an injured kitten who had been found in Carrigart.

Transport was organised and the kitten was brought to the cattery but she was extremely weak when she arrived.

Despite receiving intensive care throughout the night, the little kitten seemed to have suffered neurological damage and passed away early the next morning. 

Sadly, she was not the only loss this week.

A small kitten died from pneumonia at the weekend and another kitten, Paddy, developed early onset arthritis, which left him unable to walk.

This condition is rare in young kittens and developed suddenly during the past fortnight. 

Tragically, Paddy could not be helped and following veterinary advice, the kindest thing to do was to end his suffering. Poor little Paddy was only 9 weeks old.

There is good news too.

Badly injured kitten Phoenix has made a fantastic recovery following surgery and has been booked to go to her new home next week.

The mystery of what is wrong with adult cat Andy continues.

Originally, Andy was diagnosed as having a kidney infection and diabetes and he has been back and forth to the vets since he was rescued.

However, further tests then suggested that he was in fact suffering from pancreatitis instead.

Andy seems healthy in every other way but is not interested in eating, so is under continuing observation.

The dog rescuers are up and running again after everything came to a virtual standstill during lockdown and the Covid-19 restrictions.

Dogs can now be moved on from their foster homes to start their new lives in loving homes.


One of AIN's more unusual rescues involved a pheasant last week, who was spotted injured and laying in the road by an AIN volunteer.

The volunteer rushed the pheasant to the vets. However, the bird had been hit by a car and his injuries did not improve and sadly, he did not survive.

Finally, AIN's annual fundraising Summer Draw will be held online this year, so please check their Facebook page if you would like to buy a line to help the animals. Every cent raised goes directly to AIN's cats and dogs.

To help AIN’s animals, please donate €2 to AIN’s ‘Help Us To Help Them’ fundraising appeal via your phone by texting the word ‘KITTEN’ to 50300. Every last cent goes directly to the rescued animals for their food, bedding, vet bills, worming treatment and vaccinations. 

For further information on adoption, fostering, volunteering etc, please contact the main helpline on 087 1356188. For cat/kitten enquiries please call 087 7644420. Animals In Need Donegal is also on Facebook and has a website at

If you have a story or want to send a photo or video to us please contact the Donegal Live editorial team any time. To contact Donegal Democrat and Donegal People's Press, email To contact Donegal Post, email To contact Inish Times, email

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