These three freezing kittens were ”bought back from the dead” when rescuers spotted them huddled together under a football stand – before giving them mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
The newborns were no more than a few hours old when they were discovered lying lifeless in sub-zero conditions under Plymouth FC’s Home Park stands.
A team of electricians spotted them huddled for warmth and ran to the club shop to tell manageress Sonia Old.
Quick-thinking Sonia, 45, and her staff rushed to find them ”stone cold” and spent 15 minutes coaxing them back to life by giving them the kiss of life.
”There were four babies no bigger than our hands and they all looked dead,” said Sonia.
”They were absolutely stone cold when we got there. Lifting them up was like taking a sausage out of the freezer.
”We thought they were all dead but we got a little tiny fire for them to keep them warm and we all started CPR.
”We blew into their little mouths and massaged their hearts and they started coming back to life.”
One of the kittens died shortly after the incident on December 7, but Sonia rushed the remaining three to the nearby Elm Veterinary Centre, where they have since made a full recovery.
Sonia, of Plymouth, added: ”We spent about 15 minutes blowing into their mouths and rubbing on their hearts,” she added.
”We were doing it all the way there thinking they wouldn’t survive in the cold.”
Vets returned to Argyle’s stadium with a humane trap the following day in the hope of capturing the kittens’ mother.
Amazingly, the stray found her way back to the site where her kittens were discovered and was reunited with the kittens.
Sonia added: ”They are absolutely gorgeous. It’s so lovely that they’re still alive.
”The mum is so protective of them now too, she definitely knows they are her babies.”