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You could help make a difference to cats' lives; Today we talk to Cat & Kitten Rescue Middlesbrough.

What will you do with this year's Wish money? Any monies received through the Wish fund will go towards vet fees, litter, food, medication and bedding when it needs replacing.

Tell us about your group: We are a dedicated group of volunteers striving to help cats and kittens escape a life of abandonment, neglect and cruelty.

We regularly take in pregnant cats and re-home the mother once spayed.

We also make sure the kittens are all fully vet checked, wormed, flead and vaccinated so they can go on to their forever happy homes.

What kind of activities take place at your group? We currently have around 20 active volunteers that do anything from collecting cats and kittens to doing vet runs and raising funds in many ways. We rely solely on donations and we are not funded in any way.

Who is the longest serving member of your group? Lisa James started the rescue in 2011 when she lost her beloved cat Sassy.

Tell us about the biggest or best activity or event your group has organised: Twice a year when we can we hold a fundraising day. There are lots of stalls, tombola, blind cards and much more. What is your group's proudest moment to date? We have helped many distressed cats in the past, but the one that touched everyone's hearts was Paulie.

He was found in a garden in Hartlepool severely underweight and with cat flu.

He was thought to be around 15 years old. His eye had ulcerated with the virus and couldn't be saved.

He was not neutered or microchipped, crawling with fleas and all his teeth completely rotten.

He had several surgeries for his teeth, eye and neutering.

Once under surgery for his teeth it was found he had had a previously wired jaw too, but the wire not removed.

He is now a bit of a 'rescue mascot' and loves cuddles from visitors.

He's possibly the best and happiest success story we have had. Everyone just loves Paulie.

Why should someone join your group? We would welcome anyone to help the volunteers to keep the rescue running.

What makes you proud to be from the North-east using five words? The spirit of the community.

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Jan 5, 2018
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