'Dead cat' handed in to animal shelter actually a hand puppet

Kind member of public handed the 'dead cat' into shelter

'Dead cat' handed in to animal shelter actually a hand puppet

An animal rescue centre said sadness turned to "laughter" when a seemingly dead cat turned out to be a hand puppet.

On Monday night a very upset member of public arrived at the Guernsey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (GSPCA) with what was believed to be a dead cat that had been found and kindly placed into a box wrapped in a blanket.

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The member of public arrived out of hours and was greeted by GSPCA Manager Steve Byrne who was on night duty.

The kind individual was asked to take a seat and for details while the GSPCA Manager checked in the receiving room what was thought to be a dead cat for any identification or microchip.

As the box was opened and Steve got a closer look he realised it wasn't a cat but in fact a very muddy, wet, insect-covered, cold, collapsed small dog puppet with an injured nose.

After a full check over the dog sadly had no identification and the member of public was informed that what was thought to be a dead cat was in fact a cuddly dog hand puppet.

A spokesman said: "What started as a very sad conversation quickly turned to laughter and the GSPCA can now announce that the dog hand puppet is safe, well and washed despite his ordeal and nose injury.

"He is currently sitting in the GSPCA Managers office looking out on the Animal Shelter in St Andrews."

The GSPCA are often called out to what sometimes are first to be thought to be animals, but in fact end up being something very different.

Some examples include: a call to a sick seal on a beach was in fact a duvet; also a possible dead dog on a beach was another duvet; an injured crow was a black bag; a stray pug was called in and was in fact a frog; a dead gull hanging from a fence was a carrier bag; an injured bird was a blonde wig; a hedgehog rescue once turned out to be a pine cone; and a pregnant cat turned out to be a neutered male.

Steve Byrne GSPCA Manager said: "On Monday evening when a member of public arrived with what was said to be a dead cat your heart sinks as it is never an easy moment when we aren't able to help an animal at the GSPCA and we sadly help around 300 cats killed on the roads each year.

"What was supposed to be a dead cat was very kindly brought wrapped and placed in a box but when I went to check the animal over not only did I find it wasn't a cat I also found it wasn't dead at all!

"The deceased cat was in fact a very wet and muddy dog and not any normal dog but a hand puppet.

"Both the finder and I were extremely relieved and where an air of sadness had been at the GSPCA it soon turned to laughter.

"There are many rescues and calls that the GSPCA are involved with every week and sometimes they aren't what we expect and this has certainly turned out to be one of the most unusual we have ever seen.

"The dog does have a missing nose, a green collar, made by the Puppet Co and is black and white in colour.

"If you or your child is missing a cuddly puppet of this description please do call us here at the GSPCA on 257261."

Steve added: "Some of the calls that we get at the GSPCA we are skeptical about such as a turtle on Vazon earlier this year but when ambulance driver Geoff George turned up it was just that.

"We are fundraising for her flight and awaiting the Cites paperwork from Spain to move her to a rescue in Gran Canaria."

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