Argument breaks out between cat rescue organisation and good Samaritans who dug 7 foot hole to save kitten

Photo: Facebook.
Until September 7th I will give 10 cents to an animal charity for every comment. It is a way to help animal welfare without much effort at no cost. Comments help this website too, which is about animal welfare.

The cat rescue, Westfield Homeless Cat Project (WHCP) has been criticised for being coldly commercial in their general attitude.

Arguments on Facebook have broken out in relation to the rescue of a kitten from a pipe 7 feet underground. WHCP has been criticised for being too commercial in its attitude by focusing too hard on success as a cat rescue at all costs. It is implied that they are publicity seekers and that they don’t mind how they get it. They walk over others. It is further implied that WHCP used the kitten rescue to further their organisation by generating publicity.

In the images below the critic is Scott Steglinski who with Tony dug a massive hole to save the kitten.

NOTE: I have asked for a comment from WHCP but nothing forthcoming as yet.


There are also new allegations that WHCP are trapping outdoor cats who have owners and refusing to return them:

Cat rescue accused of trapping owned cats and not returning them
Cat rescue accused of trapping owned cats and not returning them


Cat rescue accused of being cold hearted
Cat rescue accused of being cold hearted


In defence, a volunteer says that critics don’t have all the facts, don’t understand and that the rescue does great work:

Terry Dean: It’s so interesting how people love to bash each other and believe everything they hear and read. Unless you have 1st hand experience keep your mouths shut. I was there earlier that night when fire dept. Was leaving. We were all asked to leave at 8:00. No one had permission to be there after that time. Although these men showed up with good intentions, they had no permission to be there. Since WHCP was contacted weeks ago to help save these kittens and their devoted mom, they were not weaselling in to get kittens for money. If you only knew how much it costs to save a cat or kitten. I have volunteered for 2 yrs now and see all the good hard work put in at WHCP by Denise and all the volenteers. That is why I and my sister help her as much as possible. I read somewhere on here that Denise wants her $400 for the kitten. This proves you do not have your facts straight. Where did you come up with that figure? Even if it was that much, if you took “FREE” kitten to your vet for spay or neuter and shots you’re going to pay at least $600. Do your research first before posting such lies. WHCP is one of if not the BEST shelters around!”

AND Denise Sinico who runs WHCP says that the problems encountered were due to a misunderstanding. She asked for the hole to be filled up because the guys did not have permission to dig it and there were potential hazards such as cables (permission subsequently granted incidentally). Denise feels that Scott is being unfairly critical.


The basic cat rescue story is pretty straightforward. A kitten was trapped in a pipe about 7 feet underground behind a business, Dinn Brothers, in West Springfield Massachusetts, USA.

Two guys who heard about it heroically volunteered to dig the kitten out and it was heroic because it was a massive hole (permission to dig was granted retrospectively). A plumber was called in at the end of the dig to get the kitten out of the pipe. The owner of the business approved the work. The cat rescue involved: WHCP had at one point asked the men to stop digging and fill in the hole (see above). SEE AN EARLIER POST TOO.

Also Scott says that they had to do all the repair work at the end as WHCP and the plumber abandoned them.

Volunteers abandoned to clean up and repair
Volunteers abandoned to clean up and repair

The kitten has been aptly named Piper and is with a foster carer affiliated with WHCP.

Now the dirt and mud is flying between the guys who dug the hole, Scott Steglinski and his mate Tony who played a major role in saving the kitten and the volunteers who work for WHCP who say that the cat rescue has been unfairly criticised.

It is hard to be sure where the truth lies. My gut feeling that Scott is genuine and honest because who would dig a hole like that and fill it up after the kitten rescue unless he is a damn good person.

Cat rescues have a hard time in being successful. It is challenging which can lead to less than scrupulous procedures. I’m not going to speculate about the rescue. It is said that WHCP are asking $400 for the kitten. I don’t know whether it is true or not. I have asked for a comment.

3 thoughts on “Argument breaks out between cat rescue organisation and good Samaritans who dug 7 foot hole to save kitten”

  1. Yeah I’m with you Michael on this one too, as usual. Scott’s version rings true and decent. I’m getting some first-hand experience with cat rescues in my area now and to them it’s more important to cut corners, and make press and profit than what they were probably motivated to do in the first place, to rescue cats and kittens. WHCP failed the smell test here, in my opinion. In fact the more I think about it the more obvious that is: to advocate filling in the hole where the kittens was, then taking off with it after someone else rescued it? How could anyone come to any other conclusion?


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