"Skittles" the Red Squirrel by Sallyann Young


My daughter came in with the dog under one arm and the cat under the other – calling for me to come into the garden. The reason being the cat had bought home a kitten – a very small and young Red Squirrel. It wasn’t harmed, but still had its eyes closed and so obviously was only a few days old.

Not wanting to touch it or harm it - we put a wash-basket over it and locked the pets indoors.

On the Isle of Wight is a great organisation called The Red Squirrel Trust which protects and cares for Red Squirrels, so we gave them a call. Well, 15 minutes later, 2 very smartly dressed people turned up – they had been at a wedding when we called them! The lady had a quilted pouch much like the hand of an oven glove, which she put the kitten (now named Skittles by my daughter) in. She then put the pouch against her chest to keep Skittles even warmer.

They assured us that they would keep us up to date with Skittles’ progress.  True to their word they did:- Skittles was a she, a couple of days old – they knew because she didn’t have many fleas!! She was syringe fed and grew up well with their care. Helen Butler, the President of the Red Squirrel Trust, set her free, when she was strong enough, in the woods in Ryde and Skittles is hopefully now bringing up her own kittens.

Did you know – you can adopt a Red Squirrel on the Isle Of Wight via The Red Squirrel Trust - Charity No. 1112374.

These animals are really beautiful and can be seen all year round on the Isle of Wight. The Island only has Red Squirrels.

Article written by Sallyann Young Victoria Lodge Hotel Shanklin, telephone 01983 862361