The cats were rescued by animal inspectors from the province of Quebec after suffering abuse. Another 10 cats in Quebec shelters joined the mission, making a total of 60 cats in all.
Toronto Cat Rescue, a volunteer-run cat charity, co-ordinated the operation to bring them here on Saturday, where volunteers arranged for the felines to go to foster homes for the holidays.
The cats were unloaded at the Feral Cat Recovery Centre in Scarborough, a facility for cats to recoup after spay/neuter operations. Foster owners came to bring the cats to their temporary homes.
The Toronto Humane Society, in partnership with the Toronto Cat Rescue, found a foster home for each of the 60 cats.
“We’re just so excited," said Ewa Demianowicz, a Quebec Humane Society volunteer and one of the people travelling with the cats from Montreal. “Some of these cats were with us for a year or over a year. So it’s an extremely long time for cats to live in a shelter environment."
Demianowicz said the cats were in rough condition when they were rescued. Many required medical care, but others needed one-on-one time to learn to socialize with humans after being neglected or abused.
"No cat was left behind," said Toronto Cat Rescue. "We will do whatever it takes to ensure they, too, have a promising future."
Toronto Cat Rescue is working to find long-term homes for the cats, but require donations to care for the cats in the meantime. A webpage for donations has been set up here.