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A Specialty Foster’s Story

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One afternoon, during my volunteer work at Emergency Services at UPenn, I peered into an oxygen cage and there sat a small handful of burnt fur. I looked closer and could make out the tiny body of a kitten; her eyes were closed and encrusted, her legs were just skin and bones and plastic was melted into her fur. As I learned more about her condition, I soon realized no one had much hope for her survival, but then again, they didn’t know what a fighter she was.

She stayed in Emergency Services for several days before being released back to Red Paw. By the time she left ES, I knew I needed to be part of Honey Boo Boo’s story. I contacted Red Paw and within two hours, I was at their doorstep ready to take her home in my cat carrier.

I soon learned that Honey’s owner had just taken her in off the street and duet tot he fire could not take her back. She had been through a lot in her three short months of life. She was malnourished, anemic, flea ridden and had a belly full or worms – all that before the fire even started…

When I first took her home, I was not sure if she had any eyes, as even after many cleanings, her eyelids remained swollen and shut. She let me poke and pick at her so I started picking at the plastic melted into her fur and skin, and slowly it began coming off, revealing her burnt skin and singed fur. The good news was that she had the appetite of a bear and ate everything I fed her. As she gathered strength and awareness she started picking at the remaining plastic so together we kept at it until she was plastic free and even the soot was finally coming out of her fur.

After a few weeks, one of her eyes opened to just a slit and when she reached out to paw at a toy, I knew she had sight in at least one eye. As time went on, it became clear the other eye was depressed too far back in its socket and would never be functional again. With her sight back in one eye however, she became playful and even feisty; it was becoming very evident this little girl was a fighter and not going to give up. Things were looking good – by now I had removed and popped most of the fleas, she had been successfully de-wormed, and she was looking pretty presentable.
As luck would have it, she was not out of the woods though.

During the next week she grew listless and just lay around, not eating, drinking or pooping. I contacted Red Paw and they set me up with an appointment at PSPCA that night. The PSPCA did an emergency X-Ray and admitted her right away. After a three-day stay with PSPCA, they had cleared the blockage – perhaps caused by ingesting the melted plastic – and sent her back home to recuperate one more time.

It wasn’t long before she was back to romping and eating and causing all kinds of mischief again. She was finally doing all the things a real kitten should be doing. She was now the proper weight for her vaccinations and even her spay surgery. After a short recovery from the procedure, she was finally ready for her forever home. I wanted a quiet home for the little princess where she could be the center of attention and Red Paw came through with a perfect forever home! I am sure they are both very happy together, but I will never forget my time with Honey.
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