Sad experience for animal lovers

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To the editor:
Several months ago, our neighbor moved out and left some cats. Shortly after, there were kittens. Our adoration of animals caused us to begin feeding them. These kittens stuck around the yard. Most of the colorful kittens were still nursing.
One day we awoke to all mother cats and kittens missing.
These cats had been lured into traps of a non-owner’s commercialized property for the sport and fun of it. Each day, they boasted gleefully about the number of kittens they caught that day. Unbeknownst to us, these traps had been purposely set to catch these kittens by placing food in the traps.
We took a trip to Brunswick Animal Control and explained the “abandoned cat situation.” We got NO sympathy, other than a lecture in that we were unlawfully harboring cats by feeding and giving them water. How terrible of us to feed an abandoned animal. We should be ashamed.
We were fined $140 to rescue the only kitten we recognized. He was put in the general population of feral cats. The website states a first time reclaim fee is $50, the second is $75, and the third is $100. How did we get billed $140?
We brought the kitten home, and three days later, we found him curled up and passed away. What sickness had he contracted? Lately, the news media has reported suspicious sales of dead cats to research clinics from Pender and Brunswick counties. Let the reader ponder.
Denise Burns
Ocean Isle Beach