RSPCA Inspector Helen Smith deals with a variety of feline distress calls and a potentially deadly spider is found by a removal firm.
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Britain's animals are under threat.
All too often our wildlife and domestic pets are the victims of cruelty, persecution and neglect.
Fighting to save them is a dedicated band of people trying to protect and care for them
right around the clock. This is Animal 24:7.
Today on Animal 24:7, tiny kittens crawling with fleas.
These are the cats you've got in the house now?
-We've got one, two, three, four...
A tricky rescue for a trapped duckling.
I'm just going to let it settle.
If the duckling is in there, we don't want too much water flowing in at one go.
Take it very carefully.
And will Gus the Staffie live up to the breed's bad reputation?
It all goes down to young lads who want a status symbol.
A Staffie is quite a hard-looking dog.
There are 10 million cat owners in Britain, so it's no surprise the RSPCA gets a lot of calls
about this popular pet,
but centres around the country are overflowing with cats looking for a new home.
When an inspector gets a call about another unwanted feline, it can be a real problem.
Bacup, Lancashire. Inspector Helen Smith has arrived at a house where several cats need her help.
But this is not a call from a member of the public.
This call has come from the owner herself.
-You all right?
-We're just here to see how many cats you've got and how we can help you, OK?
Do you want us to come in? Is that OK?
Frances Gray has asked for Helen's help after realising she's unable to cope with all her cats.
Are these all the cats you've got in the house now?
-There's one missing.
-OK. So we've got one, two, three, four...
Frances has got four cats and four kittens,
but it seems she never intended to have quite so many.
Is this because you never had them spayed? They've bred and you've not known what to do with the kittens?
I didn't make arrangements. A friend of mine gave me vouchers to take her
-and her. By the time I got there, they were already pregnant.
-They obviously won't do it.
And even when Frances has managed to find new homes for some of her collection, they can't stay away.
We've rehomed the big tom cat
-at the weekend.
-But he escaped.
-And he came home. We don't know how he managed it.
Frances can't cope with the number of cats living here.
-Reluctantly, she's putting seven up for rehoming.
-You want to keep one?
-The grey and white one.
-Because she was a rescue cat.
-And she was badly treated.
She's never been out of the house.
-I don't think she'd be really suitable for rehoming.
I'll ring around some animal homes and see if we can get them in.
Helen wants to help.
-But finding space for seven cats isn't going to be easy.
Have you got room for some kittens?
Many centres in the area are full of unwanted and abandoned cats.
I've got four, yeah. They're about 10 weeks.
But, thankfully, today Helen is in luck.
Right. That's fantastic.
All right, thank you. Bye.
We're going to take three to Blackpool Animal Home now.
Then the lady from another animal home is going to be a fosterer as from Monday,
so she'll take the remaining four.
To make sure Frances doesn't find herself with more kittens,
Helen gives her a voucher to get her remaining cat neutered.
I'll just give you this neutering voucher for the grey and white one.
Make sure you keep hold of that. OK?
The paperwork is complete. It's now time for the cats to leave.
-Right. I'll take this little fella?
But while she's struggling to cope with them, it's still hard for Frances to see them go.
-Don't worry. They'll be well looked after.
-My little favourite.
-You've done the right thing.
I know it's upsetting, but you have.
-I've had them since the day they were born.
-I know and you do get a bond, but you have done the right thing.
Helen hopes that by giving the kittens a new home, she's also given Frances a fresh start, too.
We're not always here to prosecute and get people into trouble. We can help people like this lady.
We've downsized her to one neutered cat
so her problem is sorted now. She can get her house back on track.
Keeping so many cats can mean health problems get overlooked.
Before the cats can go anywhere else, they have to be checked to ensure they're fit and healthy.
She heads to the RSPCA's Longview Animal Centre in Blackpool.
Care Assistant Joe is waiting to see the little felines.
-What have we got?
-These are three kittens from a house.
-Just wondering if you can just give them a quick check over.
The eyes are quite clear, aren't they?
Quite placid. I don't know whether they'd need worming.
-Skin's a bit rough here. They might need fleaing.
-A closer inspection quickly uncovers the problem.
-This kitten is crawling with fleas.
-Can you assume if one's got fleas they've all got fleas?
I assume so, yes. If they were in the same conditions, they will do.
It's vital fleas are treated in such young cats. They can cause uncomfortable skin irritations
and lead to more serious health problems.
-If kittens have a lot of fleas, can that make them lethargic?
It's also quite an easy passage for diseases to be passed on.
That is part of the danger of it.
Thankfully, despite the flea burden, the kitten is in reasonable health.
Looking at the eye, they seem quite nice. That seems fine.
-Joe checks the other brothers and sisters.
-This one's got quite a lot of fleas on it again.
-As he expected, it's a similar story for them.
-Seems to be just a flea problem.
-Everything seems OK.
-Luckily, fleas are easy to treat. A dose of flea killer will soon cure them.
There we are. All done.
There we go.
And Helen's certain it won't be too long before they have new homes.
Here we go.
It's always nice to take animals from someone who can't cope
and bring them somewhere new. This will, hopefully, just be temporary.
Then they'll hopefully get settled and go to a new home.
Still to come: the search for an abandoned cat attracts an uninvited guest.
There's geese coming towards us!
And an emotional goodbye for this dog owner.
You're doing the right thing. We'll find him a good home.
Like us humans, baby animals love to explore,
but they can often be blissfully unaware of the danger and they can land in all sorts of trouble.
Now there's a report that a baby duckling has given his parents the slip and landed in deep water.
This is the River Lark in Tuddenham, Suffolk.
The local ducks are doing what they do best.
But for an unlucky duckling, a dip in an adjoining pond at this boutique hotel
has led to a rather unexpected overnight stay.
A fairly bizarre call about a duckling
stuck under a walkway. It's possibly fallen down a hole where water pours onto the mill wheel.
I haven't had a good look at it yet, so I'm not entirely sure, but somebody's going to get very wet.
Staff at the hotel called the RSPCA after hearing the duckling's distressed calls last night.
This could be a tricky water rescue. Inspector Chris Niece is helping out and is quick to get stuck in.
Well, that's OK.
The hotel is an old water mill and the duckling has got trapped in an extremely awkward spot.
It's close to the mill wheel and there's only one way for Justin and Chris to get it out.
Somebody's going to have to go into the water up to the hole and then reach.
You can hear the duckling. If they try to make the wheel move,
all the water flushes through and it'll get washed away.
Fortunately, Chris and Justin are well-prepared for any eventuality and are equipped with dry suits.
Lots of jobs aren't straightforward. You think on your feet.
You try to see everything works out in a nice way.
They're determined to rescue it, but if it gets too hazardous, they'll have to abandon the attempt.
The risk to the person involved in the rescue may outweigh the benefit of rescuing the individual animal.
Our first priority is the safety of the people in the rescue. If we can resolve it, we will.
With the pair suited and booted, Chris has drawn the short straw.
Oh, it's very silty at the bottom.
The pond's muddy bed means backstroke is the best option,
but with all the safety gear on, it's slow going.
Chris finally reaches the mill race, the water channel which feeds the wheel, but he needs to be cautious.
I'm slightly wary of any debris.
I'll just let it settle a second.
If the duckling is in there, we don't want too much water flowing at one go.
Slowly, but surely, Chris edges his way into the narrow, dark channel to try to find the trapped duckling,
but then, as he peers through the gloom, he makes an unexpected discovery.
The situation is we have not one, but two ducklings in there at present.
They're both on a slight ledge. Regrettably, they're slightly out of physical reach of my hand.
Chris decides to try to gather up the ducklings. One false move could end in disaster.
The danger is that it only takes a small movement from their position
so that they go further down the drain and then they would be completely out of reach.
But the ducklings are just too far away for Chris to get near.
Right, we're going to have to adapt our plan slightly.
-I need something that sort of length.
-A net might work.
This net is usually used to catch small reptiles.
Today it's the ideal size for netting marooned mallards.
Reaching into the darkness, it doesn't take Chris long to bag the first bird.
Right, got one.
There's one little duckling.
Tell me when you're ready and we'll go for the second one.
With its brother gone, the second duckling heads straight into Chris's waiting hands.
Justin quickly reunites the brothers and their impromptu stay in one of the hotel's less fashionable rooms
is finally over.
-Thank you, sir.
-Good job. Well done.
Now there's another challenge facing Chris and Justin.
We are trying to locate the parents. We think there's probably half a dozen remaining, not including these.
But there's quite a lot of undergrowth along the edge of the riverbank.
The vegetation is thick and dense. It's hard to see anything, so they'll have to rely on their ears.
I'm thinking they're just here, Chris.
Justin's spotted a pair of ducks with babies hiding beneath a tree.
If the adult ducks react to the infants' distress calls, they know it's the correct family.
-DUCKLING CHEEPS They heard that.
With the parents answering their calls, Chris unceremoniously releases the pair
-back into the water.
The ducklings don't hang around. As soon as they spot them, they head straight to Mum and Dad,
who are still hiding under the safety of the trees.
They're a lot lower. They've seen Mum.
Basically, imagine being a kid. "Mum!" and then running back in.
That's worked out perfectly.
Later: from cute to creepy, can Justin conquer his fears?
I jump on the sofa if there's a spider. Fingers crossed it's British!
And an unusual cat call for Inspector Helen Smith.
The rope's attached to its collar. It's very weird. I don't know why anyone would tether a cat.
Maybe they think it'll run off.
On Animal 24:7, we've seen lots of stories about Staffordshire Bull Terriers.
They're a popular breed, but in recent years have been used by gangs as status symbols.
This has given them a bad name as being aggressive and boisterous.
So when a call came in to the RSPCA I was keen to see if they lived up to their bad reputation.
'Today I'm on the south coast of Pembrokeshire in West Wales.
'I'm with RSPCA Inspector Keith Hogben, who's received a phone call about a Staffordshire Bull Terrier
'being kept in poor conditions.'
-Hiya. How are you doing? We're from the RSPCA.
-Is it all right to come in?
'It's the second time Keith has been called to this house about the dog, a bundle of energy called Gus.'
I've had another complaint about him saying he's got no water outside.
'Kirsty has four young children. She's quick to admit she's struggling to cope with Gus,
'who belonged to her ex-partner.'
I know you've got more than enough on your plate with the kids.
-This is why I might get rid of him.
-If you sign him over to me today, I can get him into the animal centre.
-He's not going to be put down?
-He won't be.
I'll take him to the animal centre and they'll assess him for two weeks before he goes up for rehoming.
We'll get him neutered, which is absolutely a must.
'As part of the Bull Terrier family, Staffies have a reputation for being aggressive,
'but they are popular pets.'
My two oldest love him. They'll be home in half an hour.
He'll do everything for them. He'll take a treat out their hands.
-He's not a bad dog, which is why I don't want him put down.
-There's no reason for us to put him to sleep.
-He's just playful.
-I've been crying!
-Your youngest is scared of him?
-Because he's big and boisterous?
-He was fine at first. He's only one.
He's knocked her over, running round. Other than that, he's really, really good.
I am gutted. He's been lush.
'Gus is more good natured than I expected,
'but he does like to play fight. He's not being aggressive, but he could hurt young children.'
-You are lovely, aren't you?
-Less of that biting, come on.
He's been rolling around out there.
'Reluctantly, Kirsty signs the excitable Gus over to the RSPCA.'
-There we are. Do you want to bring him out to the van?
-Can I not?
Are you sure? OK. That's fine.
Hey, you all right? We'll find him a good home
and I'll get him neutered and he'll be fine.
-Come on, then.
-Is he going to take me for a walk?
-He takes me everywhere.
-'Kirsty's very fond of Gus, but he needs lots of attention
-'and she just doesn't have the time.'
-He's dying to go out now. Belly rub.
Thank you very much. You take care now.
Come on then, Gus.
'It's a tearful goodbye.
'But Keith is sure that this is the best thing for Kirsty and her dog.'
This dog needs a lot of exercise, a lot of time spent with him.
We keep going back about mental stimulation. They're not thick.
-This dog is an intelligent creature.
-'Outside, Gus calms down,
'which is a welcome surprise bearing in mind the bad press Staffies have had in the past.'
-Why have Staffies got that reputation?
-I think it all goes down to young lads out on the streets
wanting a status symbol. A Staffie is quite a hard-looking dog.
Unduly, they've got this reputation as a hard dog. They can make smashing family pets,
but there's good and bad in every breed. Look at him now.
We just brought him out. He doesn't know us, but he's calmed down.
And I'm sure he'll make a really nice pet for someone.
I can stroke you without you taking a little nibble on us.
'For those owners who keep Staffies as status symbols, tail docking used to be common practice
'to make them look less friendly. But Gus still has his tail and it never stops wagging,
'especially when he gets a much-needed drink.' Bottle fed!
'With his thirst quenched,
'Gus is on his way to the RSPCA's animal shelter.
'The aim now will be to rehome him,
'preferably with an owner who has experience of Staffies.
'Laura Simpson will be in charge of finding a new home for Gus.'
-Is it easy or difficult to rehome Staffies?
-Not too difficult.
We do rehome them,
but everything that's in the newspaper about them doesn't make it any easier.
But we get through them.
'Gus is taken to his new temporary home and another big test -
'seeing how he reacts to other dogs in the kennels.
'But Gus seems to want to make a good impression with his new neighbours.
'And soon he's relaxing out in his own back yard.'
-All right, Gus?
-So what happens now? What's the regime here?
-We'll leave him to settle in
for five days or so, just while we assess him, see what his temperament's like,
what he seems like with the dogs next door.
-Roughly how long do you think he'll be here?
-It would depend.
A good all-round dog will find a home pretty quickly - good with children, animals.
He'd certainly find a home. He seems a lovely little dog.
'So good news for Gus and Keith's happy, too.'
We've not only helped the dog, we've helped everyone.
Often people are reluctant and say, "Actually, I can't cope with this.
"Help me." They won't do that. But Gus will get a good home.
-Well done. Hopefully, in a month or so he'll be bounding around near here as happy as Larry.
'And Gus has made me realise that some Staffies don't deserve their bad name.'
Coming up: the stowaway spider giving everyone the creeps.
Not one I recognise. He's the right markings for a Black Widow.
Now we're back in Lancashire where the RSPCA is facing an influx of cats and kittens.
Earlier, we saw Inspector Helen Smith take away eight cats from an owner
who was struggling to cope. Now there's another distress call.
Nelson in Lancashire. And on this terraced street a young cat called Socks has been left behind
after her family moved on.
Hello! Here about the cat.
Scared and lonely, she's been hanging round her home,
completely unaware her family is long gone.
Luckily, though, this poor cat does have one friend.
Neighbour Emma Savage has been caring for Socks since her owners decided they no longer wanted her.
-How long have they left her for?
-About three weeks.
-And have you been feeding the cat?
-On and off.
It's been in the garden all morning. Now I've turned up it's gone!
It's typical, but hopefully it will make an appearance when it hears food.
-Helen's tempting technique seems to have paid off.
-Here it is.
Or maybe not. Helen has to give chase.
We'll just see if we can get it and identify it.
The problem is with cats, obviously, quite a lot look the same.
I don't want to take somebody's much-loved pet if it's not the right one,
so we'll go and see.
-This cat's proving to be elusive.
But as Helen's hunt takes her towards the canal, she does have some success with her biscuits.
There's geese coming towards us!
The goose may be keen for a gander at Helen's bait, but Socks is still nowhere to be seen.
We'll go back down to the original house.
That's obviously the place where it knows it's getting fed.
Helen's determined to catch this missing moggie. She heads back to the house to find out more.
Can't find it! So how often does it come to this house for food, then?
-It tends to just appear once and then it will come back.
-And sits on your windowsill?
-Always really hungry when you feed it?
There's still no sign of Socks. Helen opts for a more potent bait to lure her inside.
Have you got any tuna or anything? Anything quite strong smelling?
Can you put a little tuna brine in a dish for me? I'll see if that will attract it.
Helen's now relying on Emma to detain the deserted cat
when it eventually reappears.
Thank you. Bye.
When Emma's caught Socks, Helen will be back to collect her.
She'll then have to find her a new and more caring owner to live with.
Socks is just one of nearly 5,000 abandoned cats that are rescued by the RSPCA every year.
But for every feline that's unwanted, there are those owners who can't bear to be separated.
We are going to our next job now. Apparently there's a cat or kitten that's tethered in the back garden.
The rope's attached to its collar.
It has no shelter or anything. I don't know why anyone would want to tether a cat.
Maybe they think it'll run off. I'm just going to take a look.
Tethering a cat by its collar can prove fatal.
Helen needs to establish if there is any truth in this unusual complaint.
-Hello. Sorry to bother you. RSPCA. We've had a call about a cat tethered in the back garden.
Inside, owner Paul Brown is proud to show Helen his much-loved new kitten called Tiddles.
Where's the rope? Outside?
Paul admits he has been tying Tiddles up in the back yard.
He's terrified she'll run away.
It seems he didn't realise just how dangerous this could be.
You can't tether a cat because they have different neck structure.
So if she doesn't know she's tethered and she goes to run off - she's only a little 'un -
she's going to strangulate herself.
-If you're letting her out for the first time, keep her hungry.
-She tried to jump out.
She'll be off, but she'll come back. I promise.
It's natural for cats to explore their territory,
but Paul is worried his precious pet might get lost.
To give him some extra reassurance, Helen turns to technology.
We'll microchip her for you. If she does run off and she's found, you'll get her straight back.
Hold really tight onto her. Mind your fingers.
Oh, good girl.
Tiddles is clearly well loved. Although her flatmate might sometimes yearn for peace and quiet,
her family are desperate to keep her close. Helen lets Paul in
on her tried and tested method of luring cats back home.
If she does run off, don't panic! If you can't find her, go and get a tin of tuna or something.
Get some of that and she'll come. They're food orientated, cats.
-They'll come for tuna.
-She does as well, the dog.
-All right, thank you. Bye.
The family promises never to tether Tiddles again.
Helen leaves happy that this was all down to Paul being a bit of an over-protective parent.
He was just scared that it's never going to come back, so he put it on a lead.
He's not just tethering it 24/7 and never looking at it.
He just needed advice telling him not to do that.
Still to come: Socks is caught but has her life on the streets taken its toll?
We're going to look in the belly for any little kittens. It should tell us if she's pregnant or not.
It's quite an accurate technique to use.
The ability to handle animals of all shapes and sizes in difficult and challenging circumstances
is all part and parcel of work with the RSPCA. Earlier, we saw Animal Collection Office Justin Stubbs
help to rescue two ducklings trapped next to a water wheel.
His latest call out is to something more creepy than cute.
The fens of East Anglia, landscape that can be dark and brooding.
It's a location that perfectly befits the creature Justin Stubbs has just been called out to collect.
I'm going to a removal firm in the fens. They have a spider that a couple of members of staff found
that looks bizarre. They've never seen one like this.
They're worried that it's a foreign spider and could be venomous or something.
It's not unheard of for spiders to hitch a lift on various deliveries.
We regularly get calls to various supermarkets or houses because of something weird on their red grapes.
As an Animal Collection Officer, Justin has to confront all sorts of creatures,
-but today's assignment gives him the jitters.
-I hope it is a British spider!
I'm arachnophobic. I really don't like spiders. Pretty terrified.
I jump on the sofa if there's a spider coming, so fingers crossed it's British.
The strange spider has been found by Andrew and Christina Cannon.
Fortunately for Justin, they've managed to catch it.
It's not quite a tarantula.
-RSPCA, come about your spider.
The big question is can Justin conquer his fear?
-We put him in these little cups.
-Lovely. That's a relief.
Safely contained in the cup, Justin needn't panic,
but he does have to identify the mysterious arachnid.
I'm going to go with "It's something strange," actually.
The markings on its abdomen suggest this small spider could pack a deadly punch.
He's not one I recognise.
He's the right shape and markings for a Black Widow, but it's too big. And he has faint red dots on him.
This is a potentially dangerous creature.
It's vital Justin finds out exactly what species it is.
-Any idea where he's come from?
-We do removals all over the world, so we don't really know.
The last one we did was only Europe.
The stowaway spider was discovered in the firm's warehouse by two unsuspecting workers.
-We do a lot of export work.
They were sorting out the blankets which are up there.
-That's where the little fella was actually sitting.
Justin's got an idea what this wannabe black widow might actually be.
He decides to do a bit of spider sleuthing.
Yeah, a false black widow.
-Definitely looks more like that.
Fortunately, this mimic is not as hazardous as its deadly cousin.
A real black widow, if I'm correct, is a bit more venomous than a false one.
It's a bit smaller, different environment.
They've got similar markings, presumably to scare off various predators.
A false black widow, although it can give you a good bite, is a lot less dangerous than a real black widow.
But this doesn't help Justin when it comes to his arachnophobia.
-He looks friendly enough, doesn't he?
-I think he liked you.
He can like somebody else at the other end!
To be certain that this isn't a lethal black widow,
Justin needs an expert's opinion.
The spider may be sealed inside a container,
but a jumpy Justin is not taking any chances.
Until I know for sure what he is, or she is, she can stay in the front with me where I can see her,
hideously close to my leg, but I know she's not going to get out of there and escape around the back.
I'm pretty sure he's one of these false black widows, but I'm no spider expert.
I'll let somebody else decide.
Certain types of false black widow spiders are native to the UK,
but no-one knows where this one has come from,
so its new home will be the Exotic Pet Refuge in Peterborough.
The centre is home to more than 400 different animals
from unwanted exotic pets to injured British wildlife.
Assistant manager Paddy Breslin will be looking after the refuge's newest resident.
Right, one spider...thing.
I'm hoping it's a false black widow.
Paddy thinks Justin has identified the spider correctly.
It does look like a false black widow.
What we're looking for, pretty much, is the colour on the back of it, rather than on the underside of it.
And I can't see any pattern at all on the underside of it.
But on the top of it, there is a faint pattern or colour,
which tells me it's a false black widow and a female.
And it seems Justin was right to be cautious when it came to handling the spider.
People can have allergies to the venom and that would affect them in a bigger way.
It could turn out fatal, but most of the time, it just causes swellings and they have to go to hospital.
Finally released from her plastic cup prison,
this false black widow spider will start a new life in this sealed vivarium,
which suits Justin down to the ground.
-Yeah, I'm more than happy to be getting rid of it to somebody as quickly as possible.
I can't stand them, as fascinating as they are,
and I'm delighted to get it into somewhere that can look after it
and it can have a long and happy life of up to six years, apparently.
Finally, we're back to Lancashire where RSPCA Inspector Helen Smith
has been dealing with unwanted and abandoned cats and kittens.
Earlier, Helen was called to a house in Nelson where the owners had moved on and left the cat behind.
On her last visit, she failed to catch her. Now she's back.
It's been three days since RSPCA Inspector Helen Smith was on the hunt for the missing moggy.
Socks has been living rough for several weeks, but now she's been caught by neighbour Emma Savage.
Hello, Socks. Hello.
Abandoned by her family, Socks seems keen to be finally getting some attention.
You're beautiful, aren't you?
Even as Helen gathers her up...
Good cat. I'll put you in the basket.
..Socks remains good-natured.
There we go. Come on then.
-Thanks very much.
-No problem. Thanks very much. Bye!
It's a relief for Helen to finally catch this elusive moggy, but now there is a new concern.
Socks has been living rough for several weeks. Helen is worried she might be pregnant.
The people who left it may not have made any arrangements for it to be fed or given water, shelter.
It's been thrown out on to the streets, which is fine for a feral cat,
but not for a cat that's used to being in a home.
Helen heads to Tyldesley Vet Surgery where Socks will be given a thorough examination.
-What have you brought us?
This is just a cat that we've found. It's apparently been abandoned.
The owners moved out of the house. Somebody else has moved into the house now.
The neighbour's been feeding it for about two or three days.
-She's only just discovered that it's been kicked out.
-Let's have a look.
-I'm just thinking, if she's female and she's been out...
-Do you have any estimate of the age?
The next-door neighbour didn't know.
Vet Gareth Jones begins his checks.
-She's got lovely teeth, so she looks quite young. She's probably close to one.
-She seems a nice, friendly cat.
-Yeah, she's lovely.
Socks is in good health.
-She looks in lovely condition.
But Gareth is also suspicious about her swollen tummy.
It feels quite large, but I can't say that there's definitely kittens in there.
-We'll ultrasound her first.
-The neighbour did say she has been chased a lot by other cats.
They wouldn't leave her alone.
Gareth needs to do further examination to confirm if Socks is expecting kittens.
Her tummy is shaved ready for an ultrasound scan.
We're going to have a look in the belly to see if there's any kittens in there or not.
It's quite an accurate technique to use to see if she's pregnant.
But it's soon clear that Socks's big belly is simply due to her over-generous neighbours.
-All I'm seeing is a biggish bladder in there, but no signs of any kittens at all.
-That's good news.
See you soon.
Socks is given a clean bill of health and with no kittens to worry about,
she can now begin to recover from her life on the streets.
Two months later
and Socks has been found a new home.
But she seemed to quite like living by her wits,
so she's been given a new life that will suit her down to the ground.
Together with her friend Boots, she's now living at the local mounted police stables
as the resident rat-catcher.
Inspector John Hornby is in charge of her care.
Once Socks and Boots have settled in, hopefully, they'll become natural pest control
and they'll go round the premises and make sure there's no vermin.
They've been a pet at one stage and, for whatever reason, they've been abandoned,
so it's nice to show the animals that there is a second chance.
Kicked out of her old home, Socks was forced to look out for herself.
Now those life skills are going to come in very useful
in a home where she's sure to get plenty of love and attention.
Soon, they'll be swaggering around like they own the place, so they'll fit right in with everybody here.
If you think you know of a case of wildlife crime or a creature that needs immediate protection,
there are people out there who will answer your call right around the clock.
They are who we meet on Animal 24:7.
-'Next time on Animal 24:7...'
-Right, put it down.
'..the huge operation to rescue over 300 animals from a life of squalor.'
The conditions in every room were really horrendous, really bad. You had to wear a mask.
Just not pleasant at all.
'An emergency call-out to a deer hit by a car...'
The deer's here on the road. What do you think, Les?
It doesn't look good.
'And straight from the horse's mouth, a chance to see what's really troubling Victor.'
He should have six teeth along the top here and he's actually missing all of them.
Subtitles by Subtext for Red Bee Media Ltd 2010
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Series following people dedicated to rescuing Britain's wildlife and pets.
RSPCA Inspector Helen Smith deals with a variety of feline distress calls and Justin Stubbs has to tackle his arachnophobia after a potentially deadly spider is found by a removal firm.