El. pošta

MAGGIE AND KEITH

Late spring and early summer always bring hot, sunny, lazy days, blue skies, mild and clear starry nights, outdoor fun - and countless kittens. Even supposing that kitten season runs from early spring until late fall, many unwanted but once owned cats and kittens become redundant by the beginning of summer. Some people are ruthlessly dumping their cats on the street before heading off on summer vacation, the others suddenly find out that keeping the kittens their cat has just recently had means too many mouths to feed once they are weaned… All kinds of stupid and disgraceful excuses are being heard, but at the end of the day, entire neighborhoods are being flooded with unwanted kittens without homes and year after year, it’s happening with frightening accuracy.

Newborn kittens, blind and with their umbilical cords still attached, are being carelessly dumped somewhere to die a slow, horrible and painful death, and if they are lucky enough to be found, raising them by hand always takes a 24/7 effort with no guaranties of success. Entire litters are crammed into cardboard boxes, frequently with their mothers, whose unforgivable mistake was that they got pregnant. We’ve already reached the point where we’re happy if the kittens we run into are a month old – no matter how sick they are, at least they stand a chance to survive.

Nevertheless, when I first saw a pair of six-week-old kittens that were brought to me from the neighborhood, my heart just broke. Maggie, a sad little tortie, couldn’t open her eyes, they were horribly infected, glued shut with pus and her eyelids were swollen, red and inflamed. It was impossible to discover if she even had eyes, or if she had already lost them because the infection wasn’t treated on time. Purulent discharge was leaking down her cute little face and she was so helpless and so lost that she immediately tugged at my heartstrings. And when she hugged my hand with her little paws, it was such a touching, unforgettable gesture of thank you, that it somehow brought the whole reason of what I do into perspective and made everything worth it.

The vet wasn’t very optimistic when he diagnosed her with severe herpes and a chlamydia infection; he said she would survive but her eyesight might remain seriously damaged. He also told me that her recovery would be a lengthy process. I’ve been tending to her and holding my breath for days while carefully looking into her eyes and trying to see a sparkle under the thick layers of antibiotic ointment. And then, eight long days later, my little muffin started to open her eyes and it miraculously seems that her vision is unharmed! She made it!

Although she’s well on the mend, she’s not out of the woods yet, as there’s a chance that her third eyelids will remain protruding because of the possible damage to the nerve that controls the third eyelid retraction, which is a direct result of a horrible eye infection. We’re still not giving up hope on her complete recovery and even if her third eyelids remain elevated, the problem can be corrected surgically when she grows up.

Maggie’s little brother Keith is in much better shape and his eyes are wide open, even though he did have some discharge at the beginning. When he arrived here, his expression was so serious and kind of mournful, he looked like an old soul that’s seen too much sadness already, but he is now thriving and bursting with energy. He is mischievous and obstinate, lively, playful and very loud when he wants something, which he usually does. Both of them are still under treatment in quarantine, but they’re eating well and chasing each other throughout the cage all day long. A good sign!

Take a look at Maggie and Keith!