The old vacuum cleaner box was sitting on a bench outside a supermarket in Zwolle, Netherlands when shoppers spotted it. The cardboard box had writing scribbled all over it, and when the people got nearer, they saw it said:
Looking inside, they were shocked to discover that what the writing said was true. Three frightened little kittens were inside the box, with a pillow and a bowl of food.
The shoppers contacted a local animal shelter, and rescue volunteers soon arrived to pick up the animals. The little kittens were immediately taken to the Zwolle Animal Shelter, where they could be checked over.
The kittens will remain in the care of the shelter until they are found suitable forever homes.
Kittens who are separated from their mother too young require special care, and many don't survive without it. It's recommended that kittens stay with their mother until they are at least eight weeks old, although, in nature, kittens don't tend to leave their mums until they are around 16 weeks.
Being able to stay with their mum and siblings for longer gives a kitten more opportunities to learn. Kittens that are removed from their mother too early are more likely to experience behavioural problems, including aggression, as they get older.