If he weren’t called Phoenix, our newest kitten could easily be a Lazarus. When he was discovered outdoors in the depths of the polar vortex, the round-faced baby (pictured below) was literally lifeless. In Princess Bride-speak, he was mostly dead. Little Phoenix’s blood glucose and temperature were both incompatible with life. Our vet team immediately started him on IV fluids, glucose and a warming protocol. Astoundingly, Phoenix revived.
With his medical trials behind him, this little tabby guy’s biggest challenge now is learning to trust us — no easy feat for a feral-born baby. Slowly, though, he’s realizing he’s loved, and he’s purring against his own intentions when held.
I met Phoenix not long after he cleared from quarantine. He was staying in the hospital at the time, and when I stepped into the room, this teeny tiny ball of attitude hissed and hissed, just daring me to come closer. I sat down on the floor next to his cage, and when he stopped to take a breath, I reached one hand in to say hello. Hiss! I wiggled my fingers, and the hissing stopped. I scooched my hand closer. Hiss! I reached out a finger for him to sniff, and he dipped his head just the tiniest bit, giving me permission to gently touch his head.
There’s more good news on the trust front, too. Joon has learned to love people (I’ve seen her rolling in ecstasy while a delighted volunteer pet her), and Benny (pictured above) is thinking about following in his sister’s footsteps (I can’t quite pet him yet, but he’s comfortable with people being near him now.) And Camille is learning how to be a good, non-biting kitty. Her behavior modification program is really paying off.
The weather this winter has been cold and dreary, but these little ones are keeping our hearts warm. A few minutes soaking up the love of a kitten can get you through whatever misery winter has in store, and this winter, that’s really saying something! Thank you, dear sponsors, for returning their love so absolutely.