Lewis County Animal Shelter

Elize the cat stretches out a paw to a visitor inside the Lewis County Animal Shelter in Feb, 2020, in Chehalis.

The Lewis County Animal Shelter now has custody of 17 additional cats after officers from the Centralia Police Department rescued them from an abandoned vehicle in Centralia on Tuesday, and they are now available for adoption.

According to Centralia Police Det. John Panco, it all started Tuesday morning when officers were dispatched to a parking lot in the 1200 block of Harrison Avenue where a person had reported a parked Mazda that was packed full of cats.

The reporting party estimated that there must have been 25 cats in the vehicle, Panco said.

When officers arrived on scene and attempts to contact the registered owner of the vehicle were futile, they gained entry into the car and were able to rescue the cats. In total, 17 cats were left in the abandoned vehicle.

The cats were then handed over to the Lewis County Animal Shelter where they are now.

Jennifer Teitzel, the shelter’s manager, said that a 72-hour waiting period, which gives the original owners some time to reclaim their lost pets, has been completed since the shelter received the cats on Tuesday and they are all now available for adoption.

According to Teitzel, there were signs that the cats were malnourished, dehydrated and that there were some hygiene issues from living in the car, but she could not determine how long they had been living there.

For anyone interested in adopting one of the cats, or any animals from the Lewis County Animal Shelter, Teitzel noted they are still operating on a by-appointment basis. Appointments can be made by calling the shelter at 360-740-1290.

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