Wonderful story of resilience. Thank you for sharing!
As a cat shelter that specializes in providing care and finding homes for special needs cats, we often come across unique medical cases. It’s rare for one of these cats to be so young and tiny, though.
Thus was the case when we heard about Salvador this summer. A small Siamese kitten less than 1 pound and a couple months old, Salvador had already experienced major trauma. One of our shelter partners, RezDawg Rescue, who specializes in rescuing unwanted animals in high-risk situations brought him to us, along with significant and urgent medical needs. We don’t know exactly what happened, but it was obvious that his mouth had been affected. His jaw was barely hanging on to his face.
Salvador was a stray found near a reservation in New Mexico at a flea market by a local citizen who had taken his dogs for a walk in the area. Thankfully, this good Samaritan brought him to someone that could help.
We rushed Salvador to our medical team, who confirmed that his lower lip was traumatically separated from the jaw, but there was no evidence of a fracture. Our lead veterinarian, Dr. Cecily Palamara, DVM, guessed that the injuries were due to a predator attack. “His injury is not uncommon in cats, and is often caused by a dog or other animal bite, sometimes when the victim is peeking through a fence,” she said.
Two days later, Salvador’s lip was repaired by Dr. Palamara, his jaw was reconstructed and multiple teeth were removed due to bone exposure. Like the little fighter he is, he did well under anesthesia.
Next up was a foster home for recovery with one of our volunteers. The day after arriving there, he got straight to work purring and making biscuits and was back to eating like a champ. His subsequent checkups showed the repair was holding with no signs of infection or swelling — a best-case scenario!
In the meantime, Salvador’s foster volunteer caregiver called him a “total angel.” Despite all his early trauma, Salvador maintained the best spirit. He was inquisitive, sought attention and couldn’t get enough love. He looked rough at first, but that never stopped him from playing with toys or snuggling with his people or other cats. His foster recalled that the surgical recovery cone was too big, so she used a hair scrunchie. He wanted to be close to people and became an expert at snuggling into necks and licking faces. The other in the home cat took to him immediately, following him around and joining in the cuddles.
When Salvador finally reached 2 pounds, it was time to come back to the Cat Care Society shelter to get neutered and ready for adoption. His foster remembers crying while dropping him off. Despite how much she loved him, she couldn’t keep the sweet little boy, but shared how rewarding it was to help.
Salvador’s neuter surgery went off without a hitch, and this little lovebug found a home very quickly.
Holly came to us looking for a young, extroverted cat to be a partner for her current 1-year-old cat who had recently lost his other feline friend. We had just the right kitten for her! Upon her first shelter visit, she fell in love with Salvador, and likewise, he chose her, crawling right into her shoulder and offering his signature purrs.
Holly brought him home to the rest of her family in early September of this year. They found out right away how much he likes playing with toys. She took introductions slowly, but once Salvador met resident cat Pickles, it didn’t take them long to become fast friends. They now regularly play together, groom each other and follow each other around like shadows.
Holly now calls him Dali (like the Spanish painter) and says he’s gotten bigger and has filled out, with zero jaw issues. He is great with her family and other visitors; playful, vocal and just as cuddly as ever. He is easygoing, loves to explore and climb, and receive pets in a chosen human’s lap. He’s smart, too, and knows how to pull toys out of his basket when he’s ready for playtime.
“I like his extroverted personality,” Holly said. “He’s connected to all of us, and was a really good fit. Both Pickles and Dali are thriving and blossoming. Dali gave Pickles a new life.”
Cats like Salvador remind us how much both our foster volunteer and veterinary teams are needed to repair innocent injuries and return a perfect little cat back to health so it has a second chance at life. We need your help to continue our mission of helping all cats on their journeys to finding loving homes. Will you send a financial gift to provide life-saving medical care for cats and kittens just like Salvador?
From the bottom of our hearts and on behalf of the cats, thank you!
Cat Care Society
P.S. Cat Care Society receives no government funding and relies 100% on donations from people like you. Donations can be made online, mailed to 5787 West 6th Avenue, Lakewood, CO 80214, or dropped off in person at the shelter.
You are such an amazing shelter. I am proud that Colorado has a place like this. Thank you for this happy story!