Published: 15:14, 05 March 2021
| Updated: 08:26, 07 March 2021
Thirty ferrets have been stolen from an animal rescue centre.
They were taken from Harrietsham Ferret Rescue in Polhill Lane, Harrietsham.
Christine Wilson, who runs the rescue centre with her husband Roy, said she felt "sick" and "gutted" when she realised what had happened.
She said: "I went round to feed them and clean them out on Thursday, and I saw a cage open.
"I thought 'oh god, I haven't left the cage open, have I', but loads of them were open.
"We are quite near to the motorway here, so people quite often stop nearby to go to the loo or whatever and we can hear their dogs barking.
"The one time we have not got up to look this has happened which is typical, isn't it?"
Mrs Wilson, 67, also noticed a pair of camouflage trousers were taken too. It happened between 6pm on Wednesday and midday on Thursday.
She said: "I don't know for sure but I imagine they have run out of places to put them and so they put them inside of them."
Mrs Wilson added some of the ferrets which have been stolen had lived with them for a long time with the husband-and-wife duo having run the animal centre - where they also have dogs, a bird of prey and tortoises as well as a further 25 ferrets which were not taken - for more than 20 years.
When asked if anything like this had ever happened before, she said: "Not really. Years ago, some people tried to get some polecats when it snowed.
"But they didn't get them out."
Investigating officer, PC Jodie Rayfield said: "We believe those responsible would have used several cages and a vehicle to transport the ferrets from the scene.
"We are appealing for witnesses who saw anybody acting suspiciously in the area at the time to contact us.
"Drivers with dashcam or residents with CCTV are also asked to check video footage for anything that may assist the investigation."
Anyone with information is urged to contact 01622 604100, quoting reference number 46/35671/21.
You can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111 or using the anonymous online form.