FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP -- An animal shelter in Luzerne County is caring for a litter of kittens found in a car that state police impounded as evidence.
It's a mystery how the kittens got there and efforts to find the kittens' mother haven't been successful.
The seven little stowaway kittens are only days old and need a lot of care.
They were born where they weren't supposed to be and now without their mama cat, they're relying on Blue Chip Farm animal rescue volunteers to do the job.
It was certainly not what state troopers were expecting to find when they searched a vehicle at their impound lot in Wyoming: a litter of seven kittens, only days old.
"So tiny, I don't know if I've seen a kitten this tiny," volunteer Jenn Reese said.
Now Blue Chip Farm Animal Refuge near Dallas is caring for the cuties. State police took their find there.
The runt of the litter is now appropriately nicknamed "Trooper," but they're all considered little troopers, almost requiring the care of a human baby.
"It's hard when they're this little because you're basically their mom. You have to feed them every two hours. You have to do everything a mom cat would do," said volunteer Maryjo Engleman.
Engleman is caring for some of them at her home.
Volunteer Sharon Lukasavage is having the sleepless newborn nights with the others at her house.
"It's tiring but it is rewarding. It's nice to give them a chance that they wouldn't have had otherwise," Lukasavage said.
For these little guys, the mommy cat would of course be best but the volunteers at Blue Chip are doing their best to make sure these kittens have a fighting chance.
"You do shed a tear when they go to a new home, but it's nice that they have a fighting chance," Lukasavage said.
The volunteers tried to find the mama, but found multiple stray cats that just had kittens. They had to be sure to get the right one.
A lot of cats are born on the streets in the spring.
If these little ones survive, volunteers say they'll be spayed or neutered and go to good homes.
"A kitten can be going into heat at four months old and it's just an ongoing process. This is kitten season; it's a shelter's worst nightmare. It's not just Blue Chip, it's every shelter, every SPCA. We're overloaded," Engleman said.
Blue Chip Farm says if the kittens make it, they should be ready for adoption at eight weeks.
The farm could use some help caring for them, especially donations of KMR kitten formula.