JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- They are some of the most defenseless animals that the Jacksonville Humane Society takes into their care.
"They're tiny, they almost look more like rats than kitties," said Executive Director, Denise Deisler.
They are small enough to fit into the palm of your hands. But they can steal your heart with just one look into their big eyes and tiny noses.
"It's kitten season. So this is the time of year that we get an influx of kittens," she said.
Now they have a better chance at life. For the first time, volunteers can care for them in the new neonatal animal nursery.
"We have more than 100 kittens in this building right now. So it's a constant feed, clean, feed, clean, feed, and clean," she said.
Their tiny cries echo in all five rooms. But Deisler says it's music to her ears.
"These kittens were euthanized in the past."
Last year 1,100 kittens were killed in Jacksonville shelters. It's why Animal Care and Protective Services, No More Homeless Pets and the Humane Society came together sharing their time and money to open this facility.
"I can't begin to tell you how rewarding it feels for all of us to see these tiny dependent kittens graduate and go on to new homes. When in the past, they wouldn't ever get that opportunity," said Deisler.
So far more than 300 kittens have been saved in the neonatal nursery. That's 200 more than this time last year.
Anyone interested in volunteering can call the Jacksonville Humane Society at 904-725-8766 or go to www.jaxhumane.org.