Rescued kittens in Cornwall named after British healthcare figures

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NHS cats. Pic: Cats ProtectionImage source, Cats Protection
Image caption,
The three-day-olds were abandoned when their mother was disturbed in a garden

Three kittens rescued from a garden in Cornwall have been named after historical figures from British healthcare.

The three-day-olds were abandoned when their feral mother was disturbed by a member of the public in a garden near Redruth, charity Cats Protection said.

They have been called Nye, after NHS founder Aneurin Bevan; AJ, after doctor and author AJ Cronin; and Elizabeth, after Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, Britain's first woman surgeon.

They are being hand-reared by a carer.

The cats were unintentionally disturbed by a woman who walked into the garden where they were sheltering.

The kittens' mother fled with one of her five-strong litter, the charity said.

Image source, Cats Protection
Image caption,
Elizabeth has her name from Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, physician and surgeon

The woman immediately contacted Cats Protection's Cornwall adoption centre, where manager Libby Jepson advised her to monitor from a distance.

The mother only returned for one more kitten, and Ms Jepson knew they were unlikely to survive, so she took on hand-rearing them when they were rescued on 13 April.

She said: "Although she may have returned, three-day-old kittens cannot maintain their own body temperature and need continual feeding.

"We made the decision to bring them in, maintaining [coronavirus] social distancing throughout."

As well as Nye, AJ is named after AJ Cronin, whose book The Citadel paved the way for the NHS, and tabby Elizabeth has taken her name from Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, the first woman to qualify in Britain as a physician and surgeon.

Ms Jepson said the names provided "a small nod of recognition to the people who created the healthcare system for which we are all currently so grateful".

The trio will be ready to home from eight weeks old.

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