6.14.2013

A Fighting Chance

**For the past 4 weeks I have been nursing a kitten back to health. 
Here is the story of how it all started**

My friend Joy called me one Friday afternoon and said she found a baby kitten on her back porch. Her neighborhood has a lot of stray cats and this kitten had either been left by his mom or gotten lost. He was lethargic, malnourished, sneezing and his eyes were swollen shut from an infection. I was unsure of his age, but I knew he was way to young to be apart from his mom. I knew I had to help him.

I have a huge heart for animals. Last summer we found a dog on the side of a busy road. We kept him for a month until we finally found him a good home which I wrote about in this post here. Almost two years ago now we rescued our littlest dog Pippa. She was abandoned behind my salon. You get the point, I like to give any animal a fighting chance at life. When I saw this little kitten, I didn't know if he would make it but I was gonna at least give him a chance.

When I left Joy's house I headed straight to the vet. They had time squeeze him in and we happened to get the most kind hearted vet. Dr. Nicole Hill came in the room to examine him and she said he looked about 5 weeks old. She took him in the back to do warm compresses on his eyes to see if he even had eyes behind the swollen lids. When she brought him back she confirmed he did have eyes, but the infection was really bad and she didn't know if he would be blind. She sent me home with eye drops and an antibiotic to give him for an upper respiratory infection. I asked her if I needed to bottle feed him and she said yes that's the only way he will know how to eat because he is so young. 

I took him home and began the routine of bottle feeding him every 2 hours, putting warm compresses and drops in the eyes at every feeding and an antibiotic twice a day. I would set my alarm and jump out of bed to go and help this little fella in the middle of the night. It gave me a whole new respect for all you moms out there. 

We had a recheck appointment for his eyes with Dr. Hill three days later. The night before I went in his eyes got a lot worse. They were red and swollen and looked awful. I cried that night wondering what I was doing wrong. The next day I went in to his appointment and she looked at his eyes and said his eyelids were growing together and that it was not my fault. I then began to cry again telling her how I was doing everything she told me to. She said the only option now was to put him under sedation and for her to separate the lids that had grown together. She said the chances of him making it though the surgery were slim because he was so young she didn't think he would respond well to the anesthesia. I left the vet in tears thinking I wouldn't see him again. They called me that afternoon and said that he had done great and he was a fighter. I went to pick him up and was relieved when I saw him!

After a few weeks of rechecks and eye drops he is a different little kitten. We have given him the name Fredrick and the nickname of "cowboy" because he runs through our house like he is galloping. He is a bundle of energy and can see perfectly fine! The infection messed up his eyelids a little bit, but it doesn't seem to affect him at all. He had a recheck yesterday at the vet and she sedated him again to separate his right eyelid. She hoped that this time it would help that one open up more. Even if it doesn't change in appearance, he is perfectly happy and is one lovable little fella. 

Once he is finished with his rechecks at the vet we are going to find him a loving home. It will be hard to see him go because I have grown fond of him, but I know that we will find him a good family hopefully with another cat. He is now 9 weeks old and silly as ever!

First time we got him.
At the vet.
First night at home bottle feeding him.
Would you please look at his tiny hand holding onto the bottle? I could die it was so sweet.
The night his eyes got worse. 
The night after being sedated he was being playful, so I let him play on the centerpiece of my dining room table. He loved it!
Getting a little better.
His favorite place to sleep. Yes, he chose the basket that says relax. 
His eyes are starting to open!
Always relaxing.
A photo shoot outside with a spearmint leaf.
Quite an improvement huh?!?!

6 comments:

  1. Oh wow Kari, you are an amazing person to go through all this trauma. I would also be crying all the time, but at least his eye sight is fine! What a gorgeous little kitten Frederick is!

    Why are you giving him up?

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    1. We have 3 little dogs and a very small home. I would love to keep him, but we are going to find him a loving home that hopefully has another cat so he will have a friend! :)

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  2. He is such a little cutie! So so precious. Do you have anyone interested in him yet? BTW I am going to call you back today, this week just totally got away from me!

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    1. Yes, I have some interest in him from a few different people. No problem, talk to you soon!

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  3. You are so sweet and so amazing! I'm fairly new to your blog but was already enjoy it. I think I'm now a fan for life :)

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  4. This is so amazing Kari, you are a wonderful person!! x

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