Abandoned kitten in trash bag found dead at Jefferson Co. animal shelter


DANDRIDGE, Tenn. (WATE) – A heartbreaking discovery Thursday morning at the Humane Society of Jefferson County. Workers found a trash bag with a dead kitten inside.

The shelter posted about it on Facebook, saying that this happened while the shelter was closed and it was captured on surveillance video.

“Why couldn’t you wait,” asked Julia Carter, Director of the Humane Society of Jefferson County.

HSJC is under 24-hour surveillance and captured the moment Wednesday night when a woman drove up, while the shelter was closed, and dropped off a kitten in two grocery bags with a note.

“I don’t think the kitten was totally gone when it was put int the bag. I’m thinking there was still a heartbeat when it was put into the bag just from looking at the kitten. It wasn’t a good find,” said Carter.

When worker showed up to the shelter on Thursday morning, they found the bag with the dead kitten.

“We strive to save them all. You never save them all but we try. But coming and finding one that has clearly been through some stuff is hard,” added Carter.

She says it’s been a wave of anger, frustration, remorse and confusion.

“Not knowing what that animal went through before it was in that bag, it’s a lot of anger. It’s a lot of hurt. We feel what they feel because we’re supposed to be their voice.”

There’s a sign on HSJC’s door alerting visitors that it is illegal to abandon their animal on the doorsteps. It was up Wednesday night when the woman abandoned the kitten.

“If they had waited until this morning we could’ve directed them where they could’ve taken the kitten. If the kitten was still alive, we could’ve gotten it vet care. If it was already deceased, we could’ve helped them with either burial or taking it somewhere to be properly disposed of,” said Carter.

She says this woman’s actions will not be tolerated and they’ve given surveillance footage to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

“If you have something that happens, you can contact animal control, you can contact non-emergency dispatch, you can wait until the shelter opens or anything. You just never abandon something. They’re not disposable,” explained Carter.

If you recognize the woman, the car or know more about what happened you can call investigators at (865) 397-9411.

HSJC telling us they’re strictly a no-kill shelter and didn’t have the resources to dispose of the kitten. Instead, Carter tells us they were able to give the kitten a proper off-site burial.

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