Disgust as 'filthy maggots' burgle Kitten Inn, steal safe from Wellington charity

Kitten Inn founder Susan McNair with Oliver, left, and Twist. She adopted them in 2009 after they were found with a paw ...

Kitten Inn founder Susan McNair with Oliver, left, and Twist. She adopted them in 2009 after they were found with a paw sawn off each. (File photo)

A charity that has helped thousands of cats and pet owners has been burgled, to the disgust of supporters including a Government MP.

The Kitten Inn in Kelson, Lower Hutt, which helps to rehome, neuter and vaccinate cats, had its safe stolen on Thursday afternoon, as well as some items from its tearoom.

Founder Susan McNair​ said the unknown burglars had stolen from the community, the cats, and the volunteers.

"Chances are I've probably helped somebody you know, or some of your family over the years," she said in a message to the thieves.

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She rarely left the property, and was gone for only hours on Thursday to discover the break-in. "They've stolen our safe. They've ripped it off a beam."

Hutt-based National list MP Chris Bishop said The Kitten Inn was well known in the community for helping lots of people. "Susan is just such a kind-hearted person."

The thief or thieves had "robbed the community of a great charity".

Good friends of his had found their pets at The Kitten Inn, as had probably thousands of other people across the Wellington region, and the charity had taken care of countless abandoned animals, he said.

"They drive up and chuck them in boxes outside their house. The way people behave is unbelievable, to be honest."

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Other supporters of the charity were disgusted to hear of the robbery, with one describing it online as at the work of "filthy maggots".

Police confirmed the burglary was reported about 4pm.

It was now up to scene of crime officers to assess the property for fingerprints and other evidence.

Bishop urged people to support the charity, which has a Givealittle page, by making a donation.

The Kitten Inn runs at a financial loss, and desexes, microchips, vaccinates and rehomes cats, often for just a gold coin donation.

McNair said it had 138 volunteers and fosterers, and often helped people who had no money and nowhere else to take their cats.

She started The Kitten Inn some 20 years ago after her daughter, then aged 7, lost a kitten and asked her mum to find a similar one.

Although they found a similar-looking kitten, her daughter "burst into tears and realised she couldn't replace it", McNair said.

"She said to me one day, couldn't we just save all of them?"

 - Stuff

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