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2017 Christmas, Special Tails

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  • The Best Choice

About Andi

The Fifth Save of Christmas 2017: Andi
The Best Choice

The kitten was clearly neglected. According to her owner, Andi had not been eating, and it was obvious to anyone who saw the fleas running over her head and body that she needed help, and quickly.

Andi’s owner had brought her to the veterinary clinic but said it would be stretching his resources even to cover her exam fee. He certainly couldn’t afford treatment and was about to take his kitten home to suffer. At this point, a Purebreds Plus volunteer employed at the clinic stepped in and convinced the owner to surrender Andi to get the treatment she desperately needed.

At that point, Andi became a Purebreds Plus kitten, which meant that the rescue took responsibility for her medical costs. Andi stayed in the clinic until the weekend, and then our volunteer foster mom took her home, hoping that with a measure of good food and good luck, Andi would soon be able to bound and play with other kittens in foster care.

On Saturday morning, however, the foster mom awoke to find Andi lethargic and foaming at the mouth. She jumped into the car and rushed Andi over to an emergency clinic. There X-rays were taken and revealed that little Andi required immediate emergency surgery.

“Intussisception” is an unfamiliar word to most of us but is, according to the website of Stanford Children’s Health:

“ the most common cause of intestinal obstruction in children between ages 3 months and 3 years old. Intussusception occurs when a portion of the intestine folds like a telescope, with one segment slipping inside another segment. It can occur in the colon, the small bowel, or between the small bowel and colon. The result can be a blocked small bowel or colon. This causes an obstruction, preventing the passage of food that is being digested through the intestine.”

It can happen in kittens also and is life threatening if not treated. Andi needed surgery to save her life, and fortunately we could draw on the generosity of our donors to cover the $1,600 for surgery and post-operative care that included pain medication, IV fluids, and antibiotics. It took Andi a couple of weeks to make a full recovery from the crisis.

Andi’s story is a thought-provoking one, because sometimes a potential adopter shuns adult cats and insists on a kitten, thinking that a kitten is unlikely to incur the medical costs of an adult cat. But this is false and dangerous logic. Andi would have died a painful and horrible death if the owner had just taken her home. We encourage any potential adopter who worries about finances to wait until the finances are there, rather than be placed in a position to make a cat suffer or die for lack of care.

Now Andi is well again and thriving in her adoptive home. In the meantime, those of us who cared for her in rescue reflect upon the several blessings that led to this outcome:

  • The owner’s decision to bring Andi to the clinic when she needed help
  • The coincidence that placed a rescue volunteer in the office at that moment
  • The volunteer’s success at convincing the owner of what was best for the cat
  • The care and expertise of the veterinarians, both at the regular clinic and at the emergency clinic
  • Andi’s fortitude in the face of pain, fear, and multiple changes of environment
  • The generosity of donors, which enabled rescue to pay for Andi’s treatment

Sometimes our best efforts are in vain. This time they bore fruit, and we are grateful, on Andi’s behalf, to everyone who helped save her life.

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