Christmas at Axhayes Cat Adoption Centre

PUBLISHED: 12:00 20 December 2019

Axhayes gives its cats festive toys and treats. Picture: Kim

Axhayes gives its cats festive toys and treats. Picture: Kim

Archant

Opening presents with Christmas music in the background, special toys and games, festive goodies and a turkey dinner.

A kitten enjoying Christmas at Axhayes. The kitten is not available for rehoming. Picture: Axhayes Cat Adoption CentreA kitten enjoying Christmas at Axhayes. The kitten is not available for rehoming. Picture: Axhayes Cat Adoption Centre

It may sound like many families' typical Christmas Day - but in this case the 'family' are the residents of Axhayes Adoption Centre in Clyst Honiton, which re-homes cats and kittens across East Devon.

A few weeks before Christmas, the centre launched its annual Santa Paws appeal, asking supporters to donate special cat toys and treats.

Staff also asked for donations to help buy turkey for the cats' Christmas dinner.

In the run-up to December 25, they make up a gift box for each cat and kitten, containing a toy, food, treats and bedding, and wrap the boxes in festive paper.

A kitten surrounded by festive toys and gifts at Axhayes. The kitten is not available for rehoming. Picture: Axhayes Cat Adoption CentreA kitten surrounded by festive toys and gifts at Axhayes. The kitten is not available for rehoming. Picture: Axhayes Cat Adoption Centre

Deputy manager Jackie Phipp said:

"On Christmas Eve we gather all the presents and put them outside the pens of the cats ready for the morning.

"We normally only have five or six members of staff in on Christmas Day and as many volunteers as we can get in to help us.

"All the essential work still needs to be completed such as feeding, medicating and cleaning the cat pens, before the fun can begin.

A kitten with some of Axhayes' festive donations. The kitten is not available for rehoming. Picture: Axhayes Cat Adoption CentreA kitten with some of Axhayes' festive donations. The kitten is not available for rehoming. Picture: Axhayes Cat Adoption Centre

"We will have the radio on in the background, which will of course be all Christmas music which sets a nice festive atmosphere.

"We come together for a hot drink late morning and eat our way through various chocolates and biscuits that have been donated for the staff and volunteers.

"After a tea break we head round the cattery, opening presents with each individual cat.

"We often get more presents than enough for each cat we have on site, but we can continue to use all the goodies we receive for more cats that come in.

"We have a quick tidy-up of the wrapping paper before it's turkey time.

"All cats will receive an afternoon meal of turkey, before the staff and volunteers head home to enjoy the rest of their Christmas.

"A manager will return later in the afternoon to do any extra feeds or medication."

Axhayes always has many cats awaiting adoption. If you can give a cat a home, visit the Axhayes website , visit the centre, or call them on 01395 232377.

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